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SOX claim precludes later suit on same facts.

Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virgin Islands

When Bristol-myers squibb terminated Carol Tice in 2005 for falsifying sales reports, she filed a claim with OSHA, alleging that her former employer pressured employees to falsify sales reports and that she had been fired for reporting the activity, in violation of the SarbanesOxley Act (SOX).

An administrative law judge rejected Tice's claims in April 2006, finding the company fired her for a legitimate reason. Tice did not appeal the decision, instead filing another suit against Bristol-Myers in December 2006. Discarding her SOX claims, the lawsuit alleged age and gender discrimination in violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act and Title VII. Younger and male Bristol-Myers employees had reported the SOX violations, Tice claimed, but only she had been fired.

On April 8, the 3rd Circuit affirmed a lower court decision finding that the administrative agency's decision in a SOX proceeding precludes subsequent discrimination claims when they are grounded in the same facts.
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Title Annotation:3rd Circuit
Author:Maleske, Melissa
Date:Jul 1, 2009
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