BOSTON, Mass. (AP) – A federal judge in Boston has scheduled a hearing in a class-action lawsuit by Wal-Mart employees who sued the retail chain for denying health benefits to their same-sex spouses.
A proposed settlement of $7.5 million would pay for claims by current and former Wal-Mart associates in the U.S, and Puerto Rico that they were unable to obtain health insurance coverage for their same-sex spouses from 2011 to 2013.
The lawsuit was initially filed in 2015 by Jacqueline Cote, an employee at a Massachusetts Wal-Mart. The suit said the Bentonville, Arkansas, company denied medical insurance for her wife. Wal-Mart began offering benefits for same-sex spouses in 2014.
A fairness hearing is scheduled for Monday. Judges hold such hearings to determine whether the settlement should be approved as fair, reasonable and adequate.