Truth: The Lost Virtue in Title VII Litigation

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Seton Hall Law Review


By analyzing the Court's Title VII precedents, this Article demonstrates the compelling need - and statutory and precedential support - for requiring truth from employers in Title VII litigation. Further, the Article shows that there is no shortage of truth-seeking guides the Court may use to bring integrity to this area. Judicial demands for honesty from Title VII claimants and severe penalties against dishonest plaintiffs provide examples in this area. This Article also offers the Court's criminal law precedents as an effective source of guidance on this subject. Finally, the Article recommends that the Court follow Congress's lead by deciding cases in a way that evidences an understanding of the magnitude of employment discrimination and the tremendous difficulty of proof, given the human propensity to deceive. To deal with the inevitability of litigant dishonesty, this article recommends the adoption of bedrock jurisprudential rules that penalize dishonest litigants routinely.

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