A New York judge has refused the Buffalo Bills' request to dismiss a lawsuit brought by five former cheerleaders over pay and working conditions.
Supreme Court Justice Timothy Drury's decision Tuesday clears the way for the lawsuit to move forward.
The Buffalo Jills cheerleaders say they were paid less than minimum wage and often worked for free at public appearances at which they were subject to groping and sexual comments.
The Bills argued they shouldn't be included in the lawsuit because they contracted with outside companies to operate the cheerleading squad.
But the judge ruled there's a question about how much control the Bills had.
Outside company Citadel Broadcasting also is named in the lawsuit. Its dismissal request on the grounds cheerleaders are independent contractors also was denied.