Mead v. Fairpoint Communications, Inc.
ORDER denying without prejudice to revisiting the matter at trial when the evidentiary record is better developed 43 defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment on plaintiff's Equal Pay Act claims. So Ordered by Judge Steven J. McAuliffe.(lat)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
DISTRICT OF NEW HAMPSHIRE
Case No. 15-cv-310-SM
Opinion No. 2017 DNH 205
Fairpoint Communications, Inc.,
O R D E R
Defendant seeks summary judgment on plaintiff’s Equal Pay
Act claim, arguing at length that various facts preclude a
finding that the allegedly comparable position held by a male
employee (Rush) was substantially equal in skill, effort, and
Thus, says defendant, plaintiff cannot meet
even her prima facie burden.
But the facts as pled, taken in a
light favorable to the party opposing summary disposition, and
the supporting evidence of record, could support a jury’s
determination that between 2011 and the end of 2013 plaintiff
was paid less than Rush for work requiring substantially equal
skill, effort, and responsibility under similar conditions.
If the 2013 reorganization is found to have been a demotion
for both plaintiff and Rush (or for neither), the facts as pled
and the evidence of record could further support a finding on
unjustifiable pay disparity through December of 2014.
Of course, the record as it stands, also discloses that
numerous material facts related to the nature of the compared
positions, the relative skill and effort required, the relative
responsibilities associated, and the relative conditions under
which the jobs were performed, are genuinely disputed, thus
precluding summary judgment.
The positions at issue are high
level and sophisticated administrative positions that do not
lend themselves to easy attribute comparisons.
Because material facts are genuinely disputed, and
essentially for the reasons given in plaintiff’s memorandum in
opposition, the motion for summary judgment on plaintiff’s Equal
Pay Act claims (document no. 43) is denied, albeit without
prejudice to revisiting the matter at trial when the evidentiary
record is better developed.
Steven J. McAuliffe
United States District Judge
September 22, 2017
Brooke L. L. Shilo, Esq.
Lauren S. Irwin, Esq.
Heather M. Burns, Esq.
Martha Van Oot, Esq.
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