The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco will review a trial judge’s June decision that allowed the womento pursue their case in one lawsuit.
Class-action certification is more efficient for plaintiffs and provides leverage for a possible settlement.
The class-action lawsuit claims that, since 1998, female employees at Wal-Mart were paid less than men and offered fewer promotions.
The lawsuit is the largest civil-rights class action ever certified against a private employer, lawyers for the employees said.
If the class gets decertified, “that would be good news,” said Marc Inboden, who helps manage about $400 million, including Wal-Mart shares, at Beese, Fulmer Investment Management in Canton, Ohio.
“That’s a good ray of hope for Wal-Mart to skirt away from that cloud.”
Lawyers for the women estimate that Wal-Mart could be liable for an award of more than $1 billion if the workers win the case.
Wal-Mart denies that it discriminated against female employees and argues that the class size is “unprecedented, un-manageable and unconstitutional.”