All Press Releases for July 11, 2022

Former PATCO Air Traffic Controllers and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Agree to $47.5 Million Settlement

The settlement covers approximately 3,550 former PATCO air traffic controllers alleging they were not rehired due to age discrimination from September 2003 to October 2012.

    MINNEAPOLIS, MN, July 11, 2022 /24-7PressRelease/ -- The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Class Agent, who filed a class complaint on behalf of himself and other former Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization (PATCO) air traffic controllers, have reached an agreement in which the FAA will pay $47.5 million to settle an 18-year-old class action age discrimination complaint.

The settlement covers approximately 3,550 former PATCO air traffic controllers who went on strike in 1981 and were subsequently fired and banned from rehire by President Ronald Reagan. When the ban was lifted in 1993 by President Bill Clinton, the air traffic controllers reapplied but alleged they were not rehired due to age discrimination from approximately September 2003 to October 2012. The FAA denied this allegation and both sides presented substantial evidence in support of their claims and defenses, including statistics, anecdotal evidence and expert testimony.

The parties reached agreement after eighteen years of litigation that included a multiple-week administrative hearing and several appeals in the matter entitled David McCollum, et al. v. Department of Transportation (FAA), EEOC No. 450-2007-00109X, 310-2004-00322X and Agency No. 5-04-5026, venued in the E.E.O.C. federal hearings unit in Dallas, Texas.

The parties agree that the matter was amicably resolved and provides a fair and reasonable resolution for thousands of former PATCO controllers.

Class Agent and the class are represented by Jeff Atchley of the law firm of Norwood & Atchley, Nichols Kaster, PLLP, and Donati Law, PLLC. The FAA is represented by the Office of the Chief Counsel with assistance from the law firm of Paul Hastings, LLP.

Nichols Kaster, PLLP, an employee, consumer, and civil rights firm has dedicated over 45 years to fighting for clients in individual and class action matters. With offices in Minneapolis, Minnesota and San Francisco, California, the firm is perfectly situated for the work it does representing plaintiffs in cases across the country. The firm has recently received a First Tier ranking on the 2022 Best Law Firms List in Minneapolis for Litigation-Labor and Employment by U.S. News-Best Lawyers® "Best Law Firms."

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