The State of Texas vs. the EEOC has been decided. But the ruling only effects the State of Texas as an employer (i.e. not private employers), doesn’t stop the EEOC from issuing right-to-sue letters and doesn’t allow the State of Texas to impose blanket bans on hiring felons.
So why do we care?
In short, we care because the ruling leads the way for challenges by other states and private employers on the grounds that the EEOC issued the Guidance without providing formal notice to the public, or the opportunity for the public to comment.
Remember: this ruling likely doesn’t apply to you. And even if it did, the ruling is narrow, doesn’t dramatically change the law, and has no impact on the case law from courts across the country which ruled that if an employer’s use of criminal background checks disproportionately disadvantages minorities, the employer must show that its exclusions are job-related for the position in question and consistent with business necessity. Before you take any actions on the basis of this ruling, speak to your counsel.