General Telephone Co. v. Falcon

457 U.S. 147 (1982)


Falcon (P) sued General (D) claiming that he was passed over for promotion because of his national origin and that D's promotion policy operated against Mexican Americans as a class. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission sent P a right to sue letter and P sued under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. P sued on his own behalf and that of other persons similarly situated and the class was described as 'Mexican American persons who are employed, or who might be employed, by D....' After responding to D's written interrogatories, P filed a motion to certify the class and the Court certified a class including Mexican American employees and Mexican American applicants for employment who had not been hired. The court found that D did not discriminate against P in hiring but that it did discriminate against P in promotion. The court found that the class had been discriminated against in hiring. The court then ordered D to furnish P with a list of all Mexican Americans who had applied for employment from 1973 until October 18, 1976. P then was ordered to give notice to those persons advising them they may be entitled to recovery. Ultimately, 13 persons were awarded backpay. The total recovery by P and the class amounted to $67,925.49. Both parties appealed. The court of appeals rejected P's contention that the class should have encompassed all of D's operations. The court rejected D's contention that the class had been defined too broadly and reversed the holding that D discriminated against the class in its hiring practices. The Supreme Court granted certiorari.