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SMITH et al. v. CITY OF JACKSON, MISSISSIPPI, et al., 544 U.S. ---

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SMITH et al. v. CITY OF JACKSON, MISSISSIPPI, et al.

CERTIORARI TO THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE FIFTH CIRCUIT

No. 03-1160.Argued November 3, 2004--Decided March 30, 2005

In revising its employee pay plan, respondent City granted raises to all police officers and police dispatchers in an attempt to bring their starting salaries up to the regional average. Officers with less than five years' service received proportionately greater raises than those with more seniority, and most officers over 40 had more than five years of service. Petitioners, a group of older officers, filed suit under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA), claiming, inter alia, that they were adversely affected by the plan because of their age. The District Court granted the City summary judgment. Affirming, the Fifth Circuit ruled that disparate-impact claims are categorically unavailable under the ADEA, but it assumed that the facts alleged by petitioners would entitle them to relief under Griggs v. Duke Power Co., 401 U. S. 424, which announced a disparate-impact theory of recovery for cases brought under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII).

Held: The judgment is affirmed.


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