United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
107 F.3d 1308 (8th Cir. 1997)
Jodee Lang (plaintiff) was an employee of the Star Herald (defendant). In June 1993, Lang experienced bleeding related to her pregnancy. Lang’s doctor advised her not to work until the bleeding stopped and recommended rest for two weeks. Lang informed her supervisor, Scott Walker, that she would be absent due to her pregnancy-related condition. After one week of leave, Walker informed Lang that she had exhausted her accrued sick leave and that if Lang could not return to work, she would be let go. Lang’s doctor recommended that Lang not return to work and was unable to estimate when she would be able to return to work. The Star Herald did not have a short-term disability plan. The Star Herald did, however, have an unpaid leave-of-absence policy. Under this policy, employees who had exhausted their leave were able to apply for an unpaid, indefinite leave of absence. However, the Star Herald did not guarantee reemployment at the end of the leave of absence. Walker advised Lang to apply for an indefinite leave of absence. Lang refused to apply, because the Star Herald would not guarantee reemployment. Consequently, Lang was terminated from employment. Lang subsequently sued the Star Herald under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 (PDA), 42 U.S.C. § 2000e(k), claiming that the Star Herald had discriminated against Lang based on her pregnancy by refusing to grant her an indefinite leave of absence with a guarantee of reemployment. Lang brought her claim under both disparate-treatment and disparate-impact theories. The evidence showed that no other employee was granted an indefinite leave of absence with a guarantee of reemployment. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of the Star Herald. Lang appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Hansen, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 219,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 14,100 briefs, keyed to 189 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.