Missouri residents may be interested to hear that Goldman Sachs, the banking and investment giant, is being required by a U.S. magistrate judge to turn over documents related to internal gender-bias complaints. This demand is the result of a group lawsuit that alleges gender-based workplace discrimination by the company. The suit states that Goldman Sachs has regularly discriminated against female associates and vice presidents, specifically in the areas of pay and promotion.

The order requires the company to turn over all complaints that could be conceivably related to discrimination, which includes all female employees, vice presidents and managing directors, to the attorneys. The company must also list the names of the individuals who filed the complaints. According to the judge, female employees may have experienced the consequences of the company’s habitual discrimination either directly or indirectly.

Goldman Sachs argued that turning over these documents is tantamount to a fishing expedition and that many documents related to the complaints in question have nothing to do with gender discrimination. The judge stated that the company should have known well in advance that the concerns were related to gender when they were made. He went on to say that complaints containing certain buzzwords, such as glass ceiling, women’s work or gender, are clearly related to gender-based issues.

Whether someone is directly or indirectly impacted by discrimination in the workplace, they may have legal recourse against their employer, no matter if the discrimination is related to gender, ethnicity or disability. A lawyer could let someone know their rights, legal options and represent them in court if necessary.

Source: Bloomberg, “Goldman Must Turn Over Female Employee Complaints in Suit“, Karen Gullo, October 15, 2013