| NEW YORK, April 12
NEW YORK, April 12 A federal judge on Wednesday
rejected Goldman Sachs Group Inc's bid to dismiss two of
the four female plaintiffs in a proposed class-action lawsuit
accusing the bank of discriminating against women in pay and
U.S. District Judge Analisa Torres in Manhattan said former
vice president Mary De Luis' claims did not become moot when she
resigned last May, after the bank allegedly retaliated for her
role in the case by refusing to allow a transfer to Miami from
Dallas unless she accepted a demotion.
The judge also said another ex-employee, former vice
president Allison Gamba, had standing to pursue her claims even
after Goldman left her without a job in August 2014 when it
"divested itself" of her department.
Torres said a judge who previously oversaw the
6-1/2-year-old lawsuit misinterpreted a 2011 U.S. Supreme Court
decision, Wal-Mart Stores Inc v. Dukes, in finding that former
employees like De Luis and Gamba who sought "reinstatement"
could not sue.
In an email, Goldman said it was "examining the implications
of the latest ruling and will continue to contest this matter
The plaintiffs accused Goldman of systematically paying
women less than men, and giving them weaker performance reviews
that impeded their career growth.
Their lawsuit, which began in September 2010, also included
allegations that Goldman maintained a "boys' club atmosphere."
This included the use of sexual language, unwanted touching
and subjecting women to the "double-edged sword" of being
expected to socialize after work with colleagues to advance
their careers, it said, but risk being labeled "party girls" if
The other named plaintiffs include former Goldman employees
Cristina Chen-Oster and Shanna Orlich, who were a vice president
and associate, respectively. A fifth plaintiff agreed to
Torres "brought consistency to how the Southern District of
New York interprets standing," Kelly Dermody, a lawyer for the
plaintiffs, said in an interview, referring to the Manhattan
court. "This had been a big stopping point in the case and all
four plaintiffs can seek class-action status."
Class-action certification could let thousands of women sue
together, raising the potential for larger awards without
excessive legal costs.
The case is Chen-Oster et al v. Goldman Sachs & Co et al,
U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, No.
(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York, editing by G