The United States District Court for the District of New Jersey, in McGovern v. Southwest Airlines
, recently reinforced the rule that employees can only bring claims under the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (“LAD”) if they work in New Jersey. In this case, the plaintiff, who lived in New Jersey, worked as a Ramp Supervisor for Southwest Airlines at the Philadelphia International Airport. The plaintiff alleged that he received harassing and homophobic phone calls and text messages while he was at home in New Jersey.
The Court dismissed the case because the plaintiff worked exclusively in Philadelphia and the LAD only applies to employees who work in New Jersey. The Court disagreed with the plaintiff’s argument that the LAD should apply because the harassment extended into New Jersey when he received harassing phone calls, threats, and text messages while at his home in New Jersey.
This decision reinforces the notion that an employee cannot bring a LAD claim if he or she does not work in New Jersey. Out-of-state employees have only been able to sue under the LAD when they have significant employment responsibilities in New Jersey. This case is good news for New Jersey employers with offices in multiple states.