Crowell & Moring has filed an answer in the age discrimination suit filed against the firm by a former employee in July.
In her complaint, Mona Saunders, 54, alleges that Crowell fired her after 18 years at the firm because of her age. The case was originally filed in D.C. Superior Court but was moved to the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on Aug. 14. Saunders alleges $300,000 in damages.
In the firm's answer (.pdf), filed on Aug. 27 by Arent Fox partner Michael Stevens, Crowell says Saunders was fired for failing to "perform her job in a satisfactory manner" and not because of her age.
"[Crowell & Moring] had legitimate, lawful, non-retaliatory and non-discriminatory reasons for all of its actions with respect to [Saunders]," Stevens writes in the answer. Stevens is out of town and could not be reached for comment.
The answer says Saunders was an at-will employee who failed to allege retaliation in her complaint.
Saunders’ attorney, Ardra O'Neal of The O'Neal Firm, called the firm's response "pretty boilerplate."
"I wouldn't expect them to say anything different," O'Neal said.
Judge Colleen Kollar-Kelly, who is presiding over the case,
has ordered a scheduling conference for Oct. 27.