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Friday, June 2, 2017

Can Litigation Last 27 Years? If You're Suing Government, Yes

This case out of Washington, DC is a good example of why I have been refusing to handle cases against government for many years. My last case against government lasted 10 years. After that, I was done.

So when people ask me why I don't handle cases against government, I can start using this sexual harassment case as Exhibit A. Bottom line with government is that it isn't their money. So whereas companies don't want to be bogged down paying legal fees and costs for years, government doesn't care. You can have appeals and remands and more appeals and remands ad nauseam.

We, as taxpayers, should be outraged by this. When they decide to fight tooth and nail for years, it is your money and it is my money they are spending. They need more staff with more litigation, so many government legal departments want to keep cases going to make sure they remain fully staffed. Better yet, they can hire more staff. Then those staff need supervisors. More promotions for everyone. An endless cycle.

In the meantime, the poor victim of discrimination, sexual harassment, whistleblower retaliation or other wrongdoing is stuck in an endless cycle of litigation. Many will give up. So the illegal practices will continue. More illegal practices equal more litigation. The only winners are the government legal departments.

Yes, I do realize that not all government legal departments treat litigation like employment insurance. Most are responsible with taxpayer money and resources. But enough do that it's discouraging to people who are thinking about standing up to illegal practices.

Isn't it better for everyone, especially taxpayers, if government cracks down on illegal practices quickly rather than dragging litigation on for 27 years? Shame on DC for putting this poor woman through hell.

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I appreciate your comments and general questions but this isn't the place to ask confidential legal questions. If you need an employee-side employment lawyer, try http://exchange.nela.org/findalawyer to locate one in your state.