The Ninth Circuit just ruled that a retaliation-wrongful termination claim is viable under Title IX where an employee’s contract is not renewed in response to the employee’s gender-based complaint. Carroll College employed Bennett K. MacIntyre as an Associate Athletics Director and the coach of the golf team. In 2016, MacIntyre complained to the school’s HR director about female staff being treated differently than male staff. Thereafter, the College did not renew MacIntyre’s contract, so MacIntyre filed a lawsuit alleging retaliation. The College responded by filing a Motion for Summary Judgement, which the US District Court granted, reasoning that a failure to renew a contract that expired cannot be deemed an adverse employment action to support retaliation claim. But the Ninth Circuit reversed the District Court, holding that an adverse employment action is one that might have dissuaded a person from making or supporting a charge of discrimination, and the nonrenewal of an employment contract is just that. To rule differently would lead to an absurdity that applicants have more protection than current employees. If you, or someone you know, falls into this category, contact our office for assistance.