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Court: Minneapolis woman can invoke Norwegian law

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in Employment Law,Human Resources

A Minnesota woman who lived in Norway for 20 years before returning to the states to take a job with the Norwegian consulate in Minneapolis will be allowed to apply Norwegian law in a pay discrimination lawsuit.

The woman’s contract with the Royal Norwegian Embassy had a unique clause that allowed her to sue under both U.S. and Norwegian laws. When she discovered the consulate hired a man for a comparable position at $40,000 more than she was earning, she complained. At that point, she alleges, her superiors stopped informing her of vital information and told her to drop her complaint. She didn’t and the consulate chose not to renew her contract.

She filed a lawsuit over the pay difference. Citing her contract, she asked the judge to allow her to use the Norwegian Work Environment Act, which bars workplace bullying. The judge agreed, although Minnesota has no similar statute.

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