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Case Name EEOC v. International Profit Associates, Inc. EE-IL-0123
Docket / Court 1:01-cv-04427 ( N.D. Ill. )
State/Territory Illinois
Case Type(s) Equal Employment
Special Collection EEOC Study -- in sample
Attorney Organization EEOC
Case Summary
This case was filed by the Chicago office of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in June 2001 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. The EEOC alleged that the defendant, a telemarketer of small business consulting packages based in Buffalo Grove, IL, violated ... read more >
This case was filed by the Chicago office of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in June 2001 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. The EEOC alleged that the defendant, a telemarketer of small business consulting packages based in Buffalo Grove, IL, violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act by carrying out a pattern or practice of discrimination by subjecting female employees to sexual harassment. EEOC also alleged the defendant made favorable employment actions contingent upon the performance of sexual favors. The case was before Judge Joan B. Gottschall.

Two of the employees allegedly harassed filed related suits (see related cases EE−IL−0307 and EE-IL-0308), and two other employees intervened in the EEOC's suit. The discovery stage of this litigation was protracted, with several dozen discovery motions being filed over the course of a five-year period.

On October 23, 2007, the court divided the case into two phases to be tried before one jury. 2007 WL 3120067. In phase I, the EEOC had to establish by a preponderance of the evidence that the sexual harassment that occurred at the defendant business during the relevant time period, taken as a whole, was so severe or pervasive that a reasonable woman would find the work environment to be hostile or abusive. EEOC also had to establish that the defendant knew, or should have known, that systematic sexual harassment was occurring in its offices but did not take adequate steps to address the problem. In Phase II, the EEOC had to prove by a preponderance of the evidence that each individual claimant seeking monetary damages experienced sex-based harassment that an objectively reasonable woman would find severe or pervasive enough to constitute a hostile work environment and demonstrate that each claimant subjectively perceived the harassment she experienced to be hostile or abusive.

The defendant sought summary judgment on the individual claims in this case in a series of motions spanning from 2006 to 2009. For the purpose of resolving the summary judgment motions, the court assumed that the EEOC had prevailed in their required showings at Phase I. The court entered orders on July 14, 2008, July 7, 2009, and August 13, 2009. Within these orders, the court granted and denied in part the defendant's summary judgment, finding the harassment was not sufficiently severe for all claimants and dismissing those claimants. 2008 WL 4876860; 654 F. Supp. 2d 767; 647 F. Supp. 2d 951. In 2004, before the filing of the summary judgment motions as to individual claimants began, there were approximately 121 claimants. By 2010, IPA obtained rulings dismissing 40 of those claimants based on summary judgment and statutes of limitations. 81 triable complaints proceeded.

On October 9, 2009, the defendants moved for summary judgment on the EEOC’s “pattern or practice” claim. The court considered only the defendant’s statistical arguments (the defendants claimed that the number of individual claimants was too statistically insignificant to present a triable claim for a “pattern or practice”), and did not consider the defendant's other arguments. The court found that the statistics alone did not entitle the defendant to judgment as a matter of law, and denied the motion on March 31, 2010. 2010 WL 1416153.

On April 9, 2010, the defendant requested that the court certify its March 31, 2010 order for interlocutory appeal. The court declined to do so on April 16, 2010. On June 14, 2010, the court found, upon the consent of the defendant, that an unlawful pattern or practice of tolerating sexual harassment existed at the business from November 25, 1997 to February 14, 2005. With the order entered on Phase I, the case proceeded toward trial on Phase II.

On June 16, 2010, the defendant moved to sever the individual claims for compensatory and punitive damages for the eighty-one remaining claimants, or, in the alternative, for separate trials. The court denied the motion on June 29, 2010.

Trial began in the case on July 6, 2010. After the start of jury selection, the parties reached a tentative settlement agreement, and the court stayed the trial. At that point, the parties began to work to finalize a consent decree. On February 9, 2011, the court entered an order granting the parties’ joint motion to enforce the settlement agreement reached in court on July 6, 2010.

The court entered the consent decree on March 2, 2011. The consent decree included injunctive provisions enjoining the defendant and its employees from retaliation and from discrimination against women on the basis of sex by sexually harassing female employees, harassing female employees on account of their sex, and/or creating, facilitating, or permitting the existence of a hostile work environment. The consent decree also required the defendant to implement and maintain compliance with a “statement of intolerance of sexual harassment,” establish a sexual harassment policy and complaint procedure, and provide training regarding sexual harassment. The defendant paid eight million dollars to a settlement fund to be distributed as compensatory damages to the eligible claimants, including the intervenors. The settlement fund also paid attorney’s fees and costs in the amount of $431,667 to attorneys for the plaintiff-intervenors. The consent decree appointed Nancy B. Kreiter and George F. Galland as Decree Monitors to oversee IPA’s implementation of the decree’s terms. The court retained jurisdiction over the consent decree for three years.

After the entry of the consent decree, the parties' outstanding motions were denied as moot on March 24, 2011. The Monitors’ reports of February 23, 2012 and March 4, 2013 both found the defendant in compliance with the consent decree and made certain recommendations, mostly concerning profanity, enforcement of the dress code, and restructuring of Human Resources.

On May 14, 2013, the plaintiffs moved to amend the consent decree. The motion, to which the defendants agreed, proposed an amendment to the payment schedule in the consent decree. Under the consent decree, the defendants were responsible for annual payments to a settlement account, but had not made its annual payments on time, and claimed financial hardship, so the parties agreed to allow weekly payments to ensure that final payment was fully and timely made in March 2014. Judge Gotschall granted the motion on May 22, 2013.

The defendants submitted their final payment into the settlement fund on March 3, 2014, and the Monitors submitted their final report on March 10, 2014, finding that the IPA complied fully with the decree. The case is now closed.

Jason Chester - 08/27/2008
Sarah McDonald - 08/12/2018


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Female
Content of Injunction
Develop anti-discrimination policy
Discrimination Prohibition
Implement complaint/dispute resolution process
Monitoring
Other requirements regarding hiring, promotion, retention
Post/Distribute Notice of Rights / EE Law
Provide antidiscrimination training
Recordkeeping
Reporting
Retaliation Prohibition
Training
Discrimination-area
Harassment / Hostile Work Environment
Other Conditions of Employment (including assignment, transfer, hours, working conditions, etc)
Discrimination-basis
Sex discrimination
EEOC-centric
Direct Suit on Merits
No EEOC Final Resolution Type
Private Party intervened in EEOC suit
Private Suit Related / Consolidated with EEOC Suit
General
Disparate Treatment
Pattern or Practice
Plaintiff Type
EEOC Plaintiff
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action Title VII (including PDA), 42 U.S.C. § 2000e
Defendant(s) International Profit Associates, Inc.
Plaintiff Description Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, on behalf of one or more workers.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations EEOC
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Attorneys fees
Damages
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration 2011 - 2014
Filing Year 2001
Case Closing Year 2014
Case Ongoing No
Case Listing EE-IL-0307 : Porter v. Intl Profit Assc Inc (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0308 : Lopez v. Intl Profit Assc Inc (N.D. Ill.)
Additional Resources
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  International Profit Associates to Pay $8 Million for Sexual Harassment of Eighty-Two Women
EEOC
Date: Mar. 28, 2011
By: EEOC
Citation: https://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/3-28-11a.cfm
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
Case 1:02-cv-02790 (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-9003.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/30/2001
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
1:01−cv−01425 (C.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-9004.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/01/2003
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
1:01-cv-04427 (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/13/2014
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint [ECF# 1]
EE-IL-0123-0044.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/12/2001
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
[Minute Order] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/09/2002
[Intervenor's] Complaint
EE-IL-0123-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/17/2002
Memorandum Opinion and Order [Denying Defendant's Motion to Compel] (206 F.R.D. 848) (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0049.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 03/27/2002
Source: Google Scholar
Complaint [ECF# 1]
EE-IL-0123-0043.pdf | Detail
Date: 04/18/2002
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Minute Order [Re: EEOC's Motion to Compel] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/01/2002
Minute Order [Re: Motion to Compel; Protective Order] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0004.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/08/2002
Order [Re: Motions to Compel; Contempt] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0005.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/17/2002
Complaint [ECF# 1]
EE-IL-0123-0046.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/17/2002
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Complaint [ECF# 1]
EE-IL-0123-0059.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/17/2002
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [Re: Protective Order; Depositions; Contempt] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0006.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/09/2002
Order [Affirming Magistrate's Order Re: Motion to Compel] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0007.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/10/2002
Minute Order [Re: Contempt] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0008.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/17/2002
Minute Order [Re: Motion to Compel] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0009.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/30/2002
Minute Order [Re: Protective Order; Professional Conduct] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0010.pdf | Detail
Date: 08/12/2002
Minute Order [Re: Motion to Compel] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0011.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/28/2002
Minute Order [Re: Motion to Compel; Fees and Costs; Protective Order; New Class Members] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0012.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/27/2002
Minute Order [Re: Motion to Compel] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0013.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/09/2002
Minute Order [Re: Motion for Reconsideration; Motion to Compel; Motions for Production] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0014.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/16/2002
Order [Re: Class Members; Motions to Compel] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0015.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/12/2003
Minute Order [Re: Class Members; Fees] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0016.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/24/2003
Minute Order [Denying Defendant's Motion to Quash] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0017.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/03/2003
[Minute Order] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0018.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/25/2003
[Minute Order] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0019.pdf | Detail
Date: 04/23/2003
Order [Setting Aside Magistrate's Order Denying EEOC's Motion for Protective Order] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0020.pdf | Detail
Date: 04/23/2003
[Minute Order] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0021.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/09/2003
[Minute Order] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0022.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/26/2003
Order [ECF# 28] (2003 WL 22956004) (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0047.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 12/02/2003
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
[Minute Order] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0024.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/22/2003
[Minute Order] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0025.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/13/2004
[Minute Order] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0026.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/23/2004
First Amended Complaint
EE-IL-0123-0027.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/02/2004
Minute Order [Denying Defendant's Motion to Compel] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0028.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/12/2004
Minute Order [Denying Defendant's Motion to Compel] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0029.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/14/2004
Order [Re: Bifurcation] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0030.pdf | Detail
Date: 08/20/2004
Order [Re: Class Members] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0031.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/20/2004
Order [Re: Defendant's Emergency Motion for Sanctions] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0032.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/27/2004
Minute Order [Re: EEOC's Motion for Protective Order; EEOC's Motion to Compel (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0033.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/07/2004
Order [Granting Part of Defendant's Emergency Motion for Sanctions] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0034.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/03/2004
Minute Order [Denying Defendant's Motion to Strike Claimant] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0035.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/20/2004
Order [Re: Defendant's Motion to Quash] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0036.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/09/2005
Order [Re: EEOC's Motion to Compel; IPA's Motion to Quash; IPA's Request for Sanctions] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0037.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/23/2005
Order [Re: Defendant's Renewed Motion for Sanctions] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0038.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/31/2005
Order [Denying EEOC's Motion to Bifurcate] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0039.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/02/2005
Order [Denying Defendant's Renewed Motion for Sanctions] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0040.pdf | Detail
Date: 04/25/2006
Memorandum Opinion and Order [Denying Defendant's Motion to Dismiss; Granting EEOC's Motion to Compel] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0041.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/16/2007
Memorandum Opinion and Order [ECF# 440] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0050.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/23/2007
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum Opinion and Order [ECF# 486] (2008 WL 4876860) (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0051.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 07/14/2008
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum Opinion and Order [ECF# 683] (654 F.Supp.2d 767) (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0052.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 07/07/2009
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum Opinion and Order (647 F.Supp.2d 951) (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0058.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 08/12/2009
Source: Westlaw
Memorandum Opinion and Order [ECF# 731] (2010 WL 1416153) (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0053.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 03/31/2010
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Consent Decree [ECF# 917] (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0048.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/02/2011
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Report to the Parties and the Court Pursuant to Paragraph 39 of the Consent Decree [ECF# 929]
EE-IL-0123-0054.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/23/2012
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Report to the Parties and the Court Pursuant to Paragraph 40 of the Consent Decree [ECF# 931]
EE-IL-0123-0055.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/04/2013
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Final Report to the Parties and the Court Pursuant to Paragraph 40 of the Consent Decree [ECF# 935]
EE-IL-0123-0056.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/10/2014
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Denlow, Morton (N.D. Ill.) [Magistrate]
EE-IL-0123-0003 | EE-IL-0123-0004 | EE-IL-0123-0005 | EE-IL-0123-0006 | EE-IL-0123-0008 | EE-IL-0123-0009 | EE-IL-0123-0010 | EE-IL-0123-0011 | EE-IL-0123-0012 | EE-IL-0123-0013 | EE-IL-0123-0014 | EE-IL-0123-0015 | EE-IL-0123-0016 | EE-IL-0123-0017 | EE-IL-0123-0018 | EE-IL-0123-0019 | EE-IL-0123-0021 | EE-IL-0123-0022 | EE-IL-0123-0024 | EE-IL-0123-0025 | EE-IL-0123-0026 | EE-IL-0123-0028 | EE-IL-0123-0029 | EE-IL-0123-0031 | EE-IL-0123-0032 | EE-IL-0123-0033 | EE-IL-0123-0035 | EE-IL-0123-0036 | EE-IL-0123-0048
Gottschall, Joan B. (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0001 | EE-IL-0123-0018 | EE-IL-0123-0019 | EE-IL-0123-0021 | EE-IL-0123-0022 | EE-IL-0123-0024 | EE-IL-0123-0025 | EE-IL-0123-0026 | EE-IL-0123-0048 | EE-IL-0123-0050 | EE-IL-0123-0051 | EE-IL-0123-0052 | EE-IL-0123-0053 | EE-IL-0123-0058 | EE-IL-0123-9000
Nordberg, John Albert (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0123-0043
Plaintiff's Lawyers Chandrasekaran, Uma (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-9000
Chung, Jin-Ho (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-9000
Cohen, Ethan M.M. (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-9000
Cooley, John W. (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-9000
DeCamp, Aaron (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-0048 | EE-IL-0123-9000
Gochanour, Gregory M. (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-9000
Hendrickson, John C. (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-0048 | EE-IL-0123-9000
Henry, Ann M. (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-0048 | EE-IL-0123-9000
Johnson, Dennis P. W. (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-0048 | EE-IL-0123-9000
Lopez, P. David (District of Columbia)
EE-IL-0123-0048
Moran, Edward J (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-9000
Peters, Ross J. (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-0043 | EE-IL-0123-0046 | EE-IL-0123-0059
Reams, Gwendolyn Young (District of Columbia)
EE-IL-0123-0048
Silverman, Carol G. (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-9000
Smason, Diane I. (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-0048 | EE-IL-0123-9000
Szromba, Jeanne B. (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-0048 | EE-IL-0123-9000
Wasserman, Laurie J (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Bell, Ronald L. (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-0048 | EE-IL-0123-9000
Burgess, John (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-0048
Cherry, Myron Milton (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-9000
Clark, Violet M. (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-9000
Goldberg, Cary Neal (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-9000
Harris, Christopher Anthony (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-9000
Naber, Jennifer (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-9000
Zolna, Jacie C. (Illinois)
EE-IL-0123-9000

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