A recent decision by New Jersey’s Appellate Division recognizes that, under the doctrine of apparent authority, a company’s attorney can bind it to a settlement whether or not the employer actually authorized him to settle the case.
Jesus Gonzalez filed an employment discrimination lawsuit against his former employer, Electronic Integration Services, LLC, also known as Panurgy OEM. More specifically, he claimed Panurgy fired him in violation of the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (“LAD”), the Family & Medical Leave Act (“FLMA”) and the New Jersey Family Leave Act (“NJFLA”).
Shortly before a trial, Panurgy’s lawyer conveyed an offer to settle the case for $175,000. Mr. Gonzalez accepted the offer, and the judge placed the terms of the settlement on the record.