Sex, Age Discrimination Claims Dismissed Under Forum Non Conveniens Doctrine; U.K. Was More Appropriate Forum

In Mayer v. Time, Inc., 17-cv-5613, 2018 WL 1738322 (S.D.N.Y. April 9, 2018) (J. Cote), the court dismissed plaintiff’s sex and age discrimination case on the ground of forum non conveniens.

The court explained the legal principles applicable to the doctrine, including by noting the three factors to be considered:

(1) the degree of deference to be afforded to the plaintiff’s choice of forum; (2) whether there is an adequate alternative forum for adjudicating the dispute; and (3) whether the balance of private and public interests tips in favor of adjudication in one forum or the other.

In balancing the factors, the court held that the case was more appropriately adjudicated in the United Kingdom. It explained, inter alia:

Regardless of where this lawsuit is finally litigated, there are undoubtedly witnesses that will need to travel. Most of the relevant evidence and witnesses, however, is either in the U.K. or easily obtained in the U.K. The two key witnesses in this employment discrimination case are the plaintiff and [the person to whom plaintiff reported and who plaintiff alleged created a hostile work environment], both of whom are U.K. citizens. Moreover, the discrimination plaintiff alleges she faced took place in London. Even if some decisions with respect to plaintiff’s employment were made in New York, those decisions were implemented and felt in the U.K. Plaintiff was notified of the possibility and, eventually, reality of her termination over several meetings in London. Those meetings took place with London-based TMEL employees.

Here is the decision:

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