Google said on Sunday that it was “very pleased” to settle a class-action lawsuit alleging that it underpaid female employees and assigned them lower-ranking positions, without admitting any wrongdoing.
According to the law firms Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein LLP and Altshuler Berzon LLP, the $118 million settlement covers about 15,500 female employees who have worked for the company in California since September 2013.
Google has agreed to settle
As part of the settlement, the company agreed to have a third party examine its hiring and compensation practices.
“While we strongly believe in the equity of our policies and practices,” Google said in a statement to AFP, “after nearly five years of litigation, both sides agreed that resolution of the matter, without any admission or findings, was in everyone’s best interest, and we’re very pleased to reach this agreement.”
Several former Google employees sued the company in a San Francisco court in 2017, alleging that the company paid women less than men for equivalent jobs and assigned women to lower positions than men with similar experience because they had previously earned lower salaries.
Google denies all of the allegations in the lawsuit
“Google denies all of the allegations in the lawsuit and maintains that it has fully complied with all applicable laws, rules, and regulations at all times,” according to a copy of the agreement released by the law firms. According to the plaintiffs’ two law firms, the agreement must still be approved by a judge. In 2021, Google agreed to pay the US Department of Labor $3.8 million in response to allegations that it discriminated against women and Asians.