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Apr 2016

Jack Coakley recently prevailed in defeating a Plaintiff physician’s appeal of a defense verdict to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit in an employment discrimination case.  Jack and his team, which included attorneys Sue Devlin and Steve Coppolo, and paralegal Chase Kennedy, represented a Massachusetts medical school in the plaintiff’s suit against the school as well as a hospital system and two senior physicians, whom she claimed had unfairly disciplined her during her orthopedic surgical residency based on gender bias.  Jack and the team successfully tried the case—which lasted five weeks and saw the testimony of two dozen witnesses—before a federal jury in the U.S. District Court in Boston.  On appeal, the plaintiff claimed that a new trial was required because the trial judge had incorrectly ruled that the statute of limitations for plaintiff’s state and federal discrimination claims barred much of the alleged conduct.  Specifically, the plaintiff argued she had not recognized that the discipline was imposed based on gender bias until more than two years after the initial discipline occurred, thus delaying the commencement of the limitations period.  She also argued that the initial discipline and later alleged discriminatory events constituted a “continuing violation” which rendered the entire series of events timely.  The First Circuit rejected these arguments, and agreed with Jack that based on the plaintiff’s own testimony, the plaintiff “was convinced from the outset that discrimination and retaliation were at work” in her discipline, causing the limitations period to begin running immediately.  The First Circuit also agreed that regardless of whether the events at issue could seen as interrelated, the plaintiff’s “almost immediate belief” that the initial discipline was “sparked by gender bias” precluded her reliance upon the continuing violation doctrine.  


Additional News & Notes

May 2017 - Murphy & Riley, P.C., is pleased to announce that Roger Soun has joined the firm.... [More]
Dec 2016 - The Supreme Judicial Court recently expanded the facts pursuant to which the “mode of operation”... [More]
Nov 2016 - Five Murphy & Riley attorneys named Super Lawyers. Super Lawyers, a rating service that publishes... [More]
Oct 2016 - Lisa White was recently a panelist, for the second year in a row, at the... [More]
Oct 2016 - Murphy & Riley, P.C., is pleased to announce that Amy B. Welch has joined the... [More]
Jul 2016 - Joe King was recently elected President of the Frank J. Murray Inn of Court, which... [More]
Jun 2016 - Susan Donnelly Murphy, along with Lisa Oliver White, recently obtained a jury verdict in favor... [More]
May 2016 - Murphy & Riley, P.C., is pleased to announce that Paul R. Kennedy has joined the... [More]
Apr 2016 - In a matter of first impression for Massachusetts, on March 7, 2016, the Supreme Judicial... [More]
Apr 2016 - Jack Coakley recently prevailed in defeating a Plaintiff physician’s appeal of a defense verdict to... [More]
Apr 2016 - April 2016 Jack Coakley secured the dismissal of a hostile work environment claim filed with... [More]
Feb 2016 - Robert J. Murphy and Kevin M. Sullivan recently obtained a dismissal on behalf of a... [More]
Feb 2016 - Jack Coakley and Melissa Arnold were recently awarded summary judgment on behalf of a Massachusetts... [More]
Sep 2015 - In a recent unpublished decision, the Massachusetts Appeals Court held that a legal malpractice claim... [More]
Jun 2015 - Lisa Oliver White received the Rising Star Award from the Massachusetts Defense Lawyers Association at... [More]