Industry NewsNews Brief

Zillow settles 4 employee discrimination and harassment suits

The Seattle-based firm frees up some legal headspace
  • During a court-ordered conference on May 5, Zillow settled four lawsuits with its Irvine, California-based employees.
  • The complaints involved racial and age discrimination, sexual harassment and unreasonable expectations for employees.
  • In a separate class-action complaint, Zillow also reached a settlement in principle for a suit that alleged at least 120 of the firm's hourly sales consultants were owed $5 million in overtime.
  • Despite having a track record that's far from blemish-free, Zillow has implemented a number of employee-focused initiatives that resulted in its recognition as an attractive workplace.

Zillow Group has cleared several legal ensnarements with its employees in Irvine, California, just before heading into the official first day of trial with archrival Move Inc. today. During a court-ordered conference on May 5, Zillow settled four lawsuits that accused the Seattle-based company of harassment and discrimination, as reported by the Orange County Register. Nature of the lawsuits One lawsuit was brought by Irvine-office employee Rachel Kremer, who felt the company created a workplace atmosphere akin to that of an "adult frat house" with a "pervasive culture of degrading women." Specifically, the suit pointed to sexually explicit texts sent by Kremer's fellow colleagues. In court documents, Zillow said while the messages were inappropriate, the sexual harassment complaint was "frivolous." The basis for complaint in the other lawsuits involved racial and age discrimination, as well as unreasonable expectations for employees. One plaintiff claimed she was fire...