Lex Machina is proud to release its 2023 Employment Litigation Report, which provides insights into employment litigation trends in federal district court and appellate court over the three-year period from 2020 to 2022. This report surveys emerging trends in case filings (including federal appellate cases), most active venues, judges, law firms, parties, timing metrics, case resolutions, findings, and damages. The report often focuses on different sets of data, e.g., filtering cases in order to provide analytics on general employment cases, discrimination cases, accommodation cases, FMLA cases, FLSA cases, pro se cases, and federal appellate employment cases.

Key Trends and Highlights from the report include:

  • In 2022, 20,994 employment cases were litigated in federal district courts, an 18% decrease from the highest number of employment cases filed in any year over the past decade (25,674 cases filed in 2018), but generally on par with the number of employment cases filed in 2021.
  • In the three-year period from 2020 to 2022, the highest number of employment cases was filed in the Southern District of New York, while Judge Bernal from the Central District of California was the most active judge for employment cases.
  • In the three-year period from 2020 to 2022, Walmart Inc. was the most active defendant.
  • Morgan & Morgan was the most active counsel representing plaintiffs in employment cases in the three-year period from 2020 to 2022, while Littler Mendelson represented defendants in the highest number of employment cases over the same period of time.
  • For employment cases that were appealed to a federal appellate court and terminated from 2020 to 2022 with a decision on the merits of the appeal, 19% were ultimately reversed.
  • $1.2 billion in total damages were awarded as Approved Class Action Settlement damages from 2020 to 2022.

View our infographic.

Employment litigation cases

Legal Analytics is used for planning, budgeting, and litigation strategy. The metrics in this report can help readers decide who to pursue as clients, whether to file a particular motion, or when to settle (and for how much). This research supplements traditional legal research and anecdotal data in order to gain a competitive edge in litigation.

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