U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit

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Seventh Circuit affirms EEOC summary judgment in favor of CVS

December 17, 2015

The Seventh Circuit disagreed with the EEOC and affirmed the district court decision granting summary judgment to CVS Pharmacy, Inc. The Court rejected the EEOC’s expansive interpretation of the agency’s powers in initiating “pattern or practice” lawsuits, agreeing with the district court that the EEOC could not bring such suits without complying with pre-suit procedural requirements, including conciliation, under Section 706.

U.S. Chamber files amicus brief

June 24, 2015

In its brief with the Retail Litigation Center, Inc., the U.S. Chamber urged the Seventh Circuit to affirm a district court decision granting summary judgment to CVS Pharmacy, Inc. in a challenge to the company’s severance agreement brought by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The EEOC argued that CVS’s severance agreement, which waived all employment-related claims, might chill employees’ willingness to cooperate with EEOC investigations and therefore constitutes a “pattern or practice of resistance” to Title VII rights under Section 707.

In its brief, the Chamber notes that the severance agreement in question conforms with standard industry practice, as well as EEOC guidance, and furthers Title VII’s goal of promoting voluntary resolution of employment-related claims. The brief also argues that EEOC’s theory that it need not conciliate claims brought under Section 707 would further undermine the goal of voluntary resolution of employment-related claims.

Jason C. Schwartz, Thomas M. Johnson, Jr., and Lindsay S. See of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP served as co-counsel for the amici with the U.S. Chamber Litigation Center in this case.

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