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Attorneys’ fees may be due even if employees collect nothing

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in Human Resources

It was a good case for the lawyers anyway. Demonstrating just how expensive an ADA case can be, a federal appeals court ordered fees to be paid to the attorneys who brought a class-action ADA case against Rent-A-Center. The case involved the company’s use of the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory test to screen out applicants and employees with low scores.

Because the court found the test to be an illegal medical test prohibited by the ADA, the company was ordered to stop using it. But the class—made up of present and past employees and applicants who took the test—didn’t get a penny. Undeterred, the lawyers in the case requested $267,000 in attorneys’ fees.

The trial court rejected their claim, but not the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, which ruled the lawyers were entitled to attorneys’ fees even if their clients got nothing.

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