Charmaine Hamer v. Neighborhood Housing Services, No. 15-3764 (7th Cir. 2018)Annotate this Case
Hamer, a former Intake Specialist for Housing Services and Fannie Mae, sued her former employers, citing the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, 29 U.S.C. 621, and Title VII, 42 U.S.C. 2000e. The court granted the defendants summary judgment. The deadline for her Notice of Appeal was October 14, 2015. On October 8, Hamer’s counsel filed a “Motion to Withdraw and to Extend Deadline.” The court extended the deadline to December 14. Hamer filed her Notice of Appeal on December 11, consistent with the order, but exceeding the extension allowable under Fed.R.App.P. 4(a)(5)(C). The Seventh Circuit dismissed for lack of jurisdiction, reasoning that the statutory requirement for filing a timely notice was jurisdictional and Rule 4(a)(5)(C) limits a district court’s authority to extend the deadline to 30 days. The Supreme Court vacated, holding that statutory time limits are jurisdictional but that those imposed by rules are not—though they remain mandatory if properly invoked. On remand, the Seventh Circuit reached the merits and affirmed. Rights under nonjurisdictional rules can be waived in docketing statements; defendants’ docketing statement included affirmative statements that Hamer’s appeal was “timely”. Hamer did not establish a causal link between her EEOC complaint and an adverse action. To retaliate against a complainant, decision-makers must be aware of the complaint. Hamer has not established a genuine dispute about the decision-makers’ knowledge; all filed affidavits asserting they were never told of Hamer’s plan to file an EEOC complaint.
This opinion or order relates to an opinion or order originally issued on August 31, 2016.