SB 703 - Currently, under the Missouri Human Rights Act, a practice is unlawful when the protected trait is a contributing factor in the decision to discriminate. This act changes that standard to when the protected action played a part, played a role, or was a motivating factor, but need not be the only factor in the proscribed action of the employer. The standard does not apply to disparate adverse impact claims.
If a party files a motion for summary judgment in an employment case under the MHRA, the courts shall analyze the merits of the motion.
The act outlines two approaches to be followed when considering summary judgment motions depending on whether the plaintiff submits direct evidence of discrimination. Where a plaintiff submits direct evidence of discrimination, the employer has the burden to provide evidence that the same employment decision would have been made regardless of the direct evidence. Where there is no direct evidence of discrimination, the plaintiff has the burden of establishing an allegation of discrimination. The employer may then produce evidence of non-discriminatory reasons for the decision. The employee shall then be required to present facts to show that the employer's explanation is insufficient or illegitimate. The court shall rule in favor of the employer if it finds that the employer relied upon non-discriminatory reasons for the employment decision.
This act is similar to HB 1456 (2006), SB 168 (2007), SB 266 (2007), SB 1046 (2008), SB 824 (2008), HB 799 (2009), SB 109 (2009), HB 227 (2009),SB 374 (2009), HB 1488 (2010), SB 626 (2010), SB 852 (2010), SB 188 (2011), SB 239 (2011), HB 1219 (2012), SS/SCS/SB 592 (2012), SB 798 (2012), HB 319 (2013), SB 96 (2013), SS/HCS/HB 320 (2013) and SB 353 (2013).