When it comes to minimizing the risk of employment retaliation claims, can ignorance be bliss? In today’s competitive business environment, “what you don’t know can’t hurt you” may sound naïve. But in the employment retaliation context, a decisionmaker’s lack of knowledge of an employee’s complaint may provide a defense to a subsequent retaliation claim. Employers should pay particular attention to this potential defense given that the EEOC reports that retaliation-based charges were the most common charges filed with the EEOC in 2013 (appearing in 41.1% of charges) for the fifth year in a row.

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