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Arnold & Porter, Staffing Firm Settle DOJ Discrimination Claims

July 23, 2020, 6:18 PM

Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer and a staffing agency will pay a $56,500 civil penalty and other fines to settle a Justice Department claim that the pair refused to allow non-U.S. citizens to work on a document review project.

A DOJ investigation concluded Arnold & Porter, one of the country’s largest 100 law firms, and Law Resources Inc. violated federal immigration law by excluding dual citizens and work-authorized non-citizens when hiring temporary employees to staff a 2018 project, according to the settlement agreement.

The settlement also resolves claims Law Resources retaliated against a worker who objected to the citizenship status restriction.

Law Resources will pay an additional $3,000 civil penalty and offer $11,875 in back pay to the worker to resolve the retaliation claim.

Law Resources and Arnold & Porter will also offer a $55,000 back-pay fund to other affected workers while training employees about anti-discrimination rules. The duo will be under departmental monitoring for two years.

“We look forward to working with Law Resources and Arnold & Porter to ensure their hiring procedures fully comply with the Immigration and Nationality Act’s prohibition against citizenship status discrimination in employment,” assistant attorney general Eric Dreiband said in a statement.

Arnold & Porter said in a statement that the firm fully cooperated with the DOJ’s Immigrant and Employee Rights section review.

“This case involves a single incident where the [f]irm mistakenly provided a third-party vendor inaccurate information about the criteria for selecting contractors for a document review,” the statement said. “As soon as this inadvertent mistake was brought to our attention, the [f]irm took steps to prevent it from happening again.”

Law Resources did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

To contact the reporter on this story: Roy Strom in Chicago at rstrom@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Chris Opfer at copfer@bloomberglaw.com

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