3. Impact of the Change in Law Upon the Rights of Defendant
Finally, this Court considers whether retroactive application of Section 102 would impose new and unanticipated obligations without notice or an opportunity to be heard. See Bradley, 416 U.S. at 720. Merely taking as true the allegations in Plaintiff's complaint make it clear that this factor weighs in favor of retroactive application. Plaintiff has alleged that the Defendants intentionally discriminated against her on the basis of her race and gender.
Such conduct is illegal now, it was illegal before the Act, and has been illegal since Title VII became law in 1964. Like the school board's "constitutional responsibility for providing pupils with a nondiscriminatory education" in Bradley, Section 102 occasioned "no change in the substantive obligation" of the Defendants in this case to provide a work place free of intentional racial and gender discrimination. 416 U.S. at 731. Even before the Act, Courts possessed the power to reinstate victims to their former positions and award backpay. Until Section 102 became law, however, those who engaged in these illegal acts and caused lasting injuries to their victims were not required to bear the full cost of their wrongdoing. "Removing the artificial ceiling, therefore, creates no injustice. It instead removes an obstacle to fair treatment . . ." Hastings, 628 F.2d at 94.
It is no answer for an employer to claim that had Section 102 been enacted before the conduct occurred, he would have weighed the consequences of his discriminatory conduct more carefully. What is alleged in this case is not negligence, but intentional discrimination. The law has never countenanced that an employer may weigh the legal consequences of his discrimination and choose to continue his unlawful conduct. An employer cannot pay for the right to discriminate because no such "right" has ever existed. The law absolutely prohibits intentional discrimination. That much is made clear because the law has always permitted a Court to impose unconditional injunctive relief. Since the Defendants have never been entitled under any circumstances, to intentionally discriminate on the basis of race or gender, the final Bradley factor favors a presumption of retroactively applying Section 102.
The plain language of the Act supports the application of Section 102 to cases pending at the time of its enactment. In addition, the cases of the Supreme Court and this Circuit support the presumption of retroactivity where a statute does not affect the matured, unconditional rights of the parties. Section 102 of the Act does not affect such rights because it only provides new remedies and the option of a jury trial. These provisions only concern the enforcement of conduct that was unlawful before the Act was passed.
Given this presumption and the statute's plain language, Section 102 is applicable to this case, which was pending when the President signed the Civil Rights Act of 1991 into law. Therefore, the plaintiff's Motion for Leave to Amend the Complaint to include a claim for compensatory damages and a jury trial demand is granted. Plaintiff is directed to file such a complaint in compliance with the local rules.
A separate order accompanies this opinion.
United States District Court
ORDER - April 21, 1992, Filed
Upon consideration of the entire record in the above-captioned matter, the Plaintiff's Motion for Leave to Amend the Complaint, and the Defendants' Opposition thereto it is this 21 day of April, 1992 hereby
ORDERED that the Plaintiff's Motion for Leave to Amend the Complaint is GRANTED and it is
FURTHER ORDERED that Plaintiff will be allowed ten (10) days to amend her complaint in compliance with all local rules.
United States District Court