New York law firm Davis Polk & Wardwell is hoping to move on from a 2-year-old lawsuit filed by Kaloma Cardwell, a Black former associate of the firm, who claims he was fired in 2018 because of his race. 

In a memorandum filed in Manhattan federal court on Friday, Davis Polk asserted that the facts produced thus far demonstrated that Cardwell was fired because he “was not able to perform at the level expected of a Davis Polk associate.” The firm said “race played no part in that decision” and that Cardwell missed deadlines and failed to research articles and client documents during his time at the firm’s corporate department. Davis Polk claims that during a deal he was assigned to work on in 2017, Cardwell was absent for over ten hours, forcing the M&A group to source replacement staffing. 

Cardwell claims the racial discrimination he faced at the firm led to his negative performance evaluations. 

Davis Polk is asking US District Judge Gregory Woods to award the firm summary judgement on the lawsuit brought by Cardwell. This comes just over two months after Woods abandoned parts of Cardwell’s lawsuit against Davis Polk and sanctioned Cardwell’s attorney after Cardwell failed to answer the law firm’s interrogatories and produce documents. 

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