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Press Release 02-23-2024

Bako Pays $50,000 to Settle EEOC Pregnancy Discrimination Lawsuit

Medical Laboratory Resolves Federal Lawsuit Charging That It Fired Employee Because of Her Pregnancy and Complaints of Pregnancy Discrimination

ATLANTA – Bakotic Pathology Associates, LLC (Bako), a pathology laboratory headquartered in Alpharetta, Georgia, will pay $50,000 and furnish other relief to settle a sex discrimination and retaliation lawsuit, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced today.

The EEOC suit alleged Bako discriminated and retaliated against an employee who was experiencing pregnancy-related symptoms, when it fired her while she was on approved medical leave and receiving short-term disability benefits, shortly after she complained of pregnancy discrimination to Bako’s Chief Operating Officer. According to the EEOC, Bako discharged the employee for the pretextual reason of failing to report to work for two days without notice, when she sought to return to work after her pregnancy-related medical leave ended.

Such alleged conduct violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII), which prohibits discrimination based on sex and retaliation for engaging in protected activity. The EEOC filed suit (EEOC v. Bakotic Pathology Associates, LLC, Case No. 1:23-cv-03918-TWT-JCF) in U.S. District Court for the Northen District of Georgia, Atlanta Division, after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its administrative conciliation process.

In addition to the $50,000 in monetary relief, the two-year consent decree settling the suit requires Bako to provide its employees with specialized training on Title VII’s prohibitions against sex discrimination and retaliation. Bako is also required to circulate Title VII policies and its internal complaint reporting procedures to its employees, and to report complaints of pregnancy discrimination to the EEOC during the term of the consent decree. Additionally, the decree requires Bako to post a notice which sets forth the general requirements of Title VII at each of its facilities.

“Employers violate antidiscrimination laws when they take action against women due to their pregnancy,” said Regional Attorney for the Atlanta District Office Marcus G. Keegan. “This lawsuit served as a reminder to employers that federal law prohibits discrimination against employees on the bases of pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions. The EEOC is pleased that Bako agreed to take steps to prevent future discrimination on the bases of sex and pregnancy.”

“The EEOC remains steadfast in its commitment to the enforcement of laws that protect women from unlawful discrimination,” said Atlanta Office District Director Darrell Graham.  “The EEOC will use all tools at its disposal to root out pregnancy discrimination, including the federal Pregnant Worker Fairness Act (PWFA), which was enacted last year.”

For more information about pregnancy discrimination, visit For more information about the PWFA, visit

The EEOC’s Atlanta District Office is responsible for addressing discrimination charges and conducting agency litigation in the State of Georgia and the State of South Carolina Counties of Allendale, Bamberg, Barnwell, Beaufort, Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton, Dorchester, Georgetown, Hampton, Jasper, and Williamsburg.

The EEOC prevents and remedies unlawful employment discrimination and advances equal opportunity for all. More information is available at Stay connected with the latest EEOC news by subscribing to our email updates.