What is Aiding and Abetting Discrimination and Harassment?

Aiding and abetting is a form of derivative liability. Richard B. LeVine, Inc. v. Higashi (2005) 131 Cal.App.4th 566.

A defendant is liable for aiding and abetting if the person:

  1. knows the other’s conduct constitutes a breach of duty and gives substantial assistance or encouragement to the other to so act, or
  2. gives substantial assistance to the other in accomplishing a tortious result and the person’s own conduct, separately considered, constitutes a breach of duty to the third person

Casey v. U.S. Bank Nat'l Assoc. (2005) 127 Cal.App.4th 1138, 1144; see also Gov’t Code, § 12940(i).

Aiding and abetting cannot be imposed on a party who is the alleged discriminator, retaliator, etc. Navarrete v. Mayer (2015) 237 Cal.App.4th 1276 (aider and abettor liability imposes liability on a person who did not personally cause the harm to plaintiff).

Mere knowledge and the failure to prevent it do not constitute aiding and abetting. Austin B. v. Escondido Union School District (2007) 149 Cal.App.4th 860, 879. Failing to act is insufficient for aiding and abetting under FEHA:

“A failure to act is a far cry from providing substantial assistance and conflates an ‘aiding and abetting’ claim with a claim brought under Cal. Gov.Code § 12940(k), which makes it unlawful for an employer to fail to take all reasonable steps necessary to prevent discrimination and harassment from occurring.” Ortiz v. Georgia Pacific (E.D. Cal. 2013) 973 F.Supp.2d 1162, 1184.

It requires the defendant “to reach a conscious decision to participate in tortious activity for the purpose of assisting another in performing a wrongful act.” Berg & Berg Enterprises, LLC v. Sherwood Partners, Inc. (2005) 131 Cal.App.4th 802, 823 n.10.

It applies to joint tortfeasors. Berg & Berg Enterprises, LLC v. Sherwood Partners, Inc. (2005) 131 Cal.App.4th 802, 823 n.10.

Note, individuals who are not themselves employers cannot be sued under FEHA for alleged discriminatory acts, nor for claims of wrongful termination in violation of public policy. Reno v. Baird (1998) 18 Cal.4th 640, 663-664.

And “liability cannot be imposed upon the State under the aiding and abetting provisions of FEHA...” Vernon v. State (2004) 116 Cal.App.4th 114, 132.

Useful Resources for Aiding and Abetting Discrimination and Harassment (FEHA)

Rulings on Aiding and Abetting Discrimination and Harassment (FEHA)

226-250 of 4089 results

WILLIS VS CITY OF CARLSBAD

The Legislature has decided to treat claims under FEHA differently because, generally speaking, FEHA is designed to vindicate civil rights.

  • Hearing

    Jan 17, 2019

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Other Employment

R MARIA ARCURI VS CBRE INC

On September 27, 2017, Plaintiff R Maria Arcuri commenced this action against Defendant CBRE, Inc. for (1) employment discrimination in violation of FEHA; (2) failure to accommodate in violation of FEHA; (3) failure to engage in a timely and good faith interactive process in violation of FEHA; (4) harassment in violation of FEHA; (6) failure to prevent/remedy discrimination, harassment, and violation of FEHA; (7) wrongful discharge in violation of public policy; and (8) intentional infliction of emotional distress

  • Hearing

    Dec 09, 2019

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Wrongful Term

RAFAELA TORRES VS KAISER FOUNDATION HOSPITALS ET AL

Discussion Robert's discrimination cause of action was brought under FEHA. (Gov. Code, § 12940.) “In civil actions brought under [FEHA], the court, in its discretion, may award to the prevailing party … reasonable attorney's fees and costs, including expert witness fees.” (Gov. Code, § 12965, subd. (b).)

  • Hearing

    Jan 18, 2019

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Wrongful Term

MELONY LIGHT VS. CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF PARKS AND RECREATION

Plaintiff who was employed by defendant in San Diego County brought causes of action for: (1) employment discrimination disability, (2) harassment based on disability, (3) failure to prevent discrimination and retaliation, (4) employment discrimination retaliation, (5) negligent hiring, retention , and supervision, (6) assault, (7) violation of civil rights (8) false imprisonment, (9) negligent infliction of emotional distress. and (10) intentional infliction of emotional distress.

  • Hearing

    Jun 17, 2013

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Other Employment

FRED DAILEY VS LOS ANGELES UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT, A CALIFORNIA PUBLIC SCHOOL SYSTEM

Discussion Factual and procedural background On November 25, 2019, Plaintiff Fred Dailey filed this action against Defendant Los Angeles Unified School District (“LAUSD”), alleging the following causes of action: C/A 1: for Discrimination in Violation of FEHA (Gov’t Code §§ 12940 et seq) C/A 2: for Retaliation in Violation of FEHA (Gov’t Code §§ 12940 et seq) C/A 3: for Failure to Prevent Discrimination/Retaliation in Violation of FEHA (Gov’t Code § 12940(k)) C/A 4: for Retaliation in Violation of CFRA

  • Hearing

    Jun 25, 2020

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Other Employment

ANDREWS VS. ORANGE EVANGELICAL COVENANT CHURCH OF ORANGE

Therefore, Defendant is not an “employer” for purposes of FEHA, and cannot be held liable for the purported discrimination in violation of FEHA. Unless Plaintiff can establish at the hearing how she can plead a valid FEHA claim, the court will SUSTAIN the demurrer without leave to amend. (See, Hendy v.

  • Hearing

    Mar 13, 2017

JITKA CICMIR VS. LEE AND LUM DENTAL, PC, ET AL.

“[T]o avoid summary judgment, an employee claiming discrimination must offer substantial evidence that the employer's stated nondiscriminatory reason for the adverse action was untrue or pretextual, or evidence the employer acted with a discriminatory animus, or a combination of the two, such that a reasonable trier of fact could conclude the employer engaged in intentional discrimination.” (Johnson v.

  • Hearing

    Dec 19, 2017

QUIANA FOLEY VS SB BOOKS

In the FAC, Foley now alleges that the public policy is the right to be free from sexual assault and harassment and to report such crimes to the police. (FAC, ¶¶ 30, 31.) Because the court determines that Foley has adequately alleged a FEHA claim based upon retaliation for harassment, Foley states a claim based upon the alleged FEHA violation. (See Rojo v. Kliger (1990) 52 Cal.3d 65, 91.) With respect to the public policy relating to freedom from workplace violence, the case of Franklin v.

  • Hearing

    Oct 27, 2015

JIOVANI DIAZ VS 99 CENTS ONLY STORES LLC

Plaintiff brings a FEHA case for disability discrimination and retaliation. By this motion, plaintiff seeks to compel a further response to only form interrogatory 209.2. That interrogatory seeks from defendant information about any employee civil action against the employer within the last ten years, including the contact information for the plaintiff; the court, party names, and case number; contact information for the defense attorneys; and whether the other lawsuits are pending.

  • Hearing

    Jul 11, 2017

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Wrongful Term

AGUSTIN SANCHEZ VS APRO LLC, ET AL.

On May 29, 2019, Plaintiff filed a Complaint against Defendants alleging causes of action for: Discrimination in Violation of the FEHA; Failure to Accommodate; Failure to Engage in the Interactive Process; Harassment in Violation of the FEHA; Retaliation in Violation of the FEHA; Failure to Investigate and Prevent Discrimination in Violation of the FEHA; Wrongful Termination in Violation of the FEHA; Wrongful Termination in Violation of Public Policy; Violation of California Labor Code §230(b); Failure

  • Hearing

    Feb 05, 2020

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Wrongful Term

LEON VS SAN DIEGO TRANSIT CORPORATION

However, none of the decisions cited involved FEHA cases. In Harris v. City of Santa Monica (2013) 56 Cal.4th 203, the Supreme Court held that declaratory relief is available in mixed motive cases. "[T]he unavailability of damages upon an employer's same-decision showing does not make a finding of unlawful discrimination an empty gesture. Such a finding has several key consequences.

  • Hearing

    Dec 07, 2017

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Wrongful Term

ASHENAFI BENTI VS FOX RENT A CAR INC

The FEHA makes it unlawful for an employer “to fail to take all reasonable steps necessary to prevent discrimination and harassment from occurring.” Scotch v. Art Inst. of California-Orange Cnty., Inc. (2009) 173 Cal.App.4th 986, 1003 (citing Govt. Code § 12940(h)). “There’s no logic that says an employee who has not been discriminated against can sue an employer for not preventing discrimination that didn’t happen, for not having a policy to prevent discrimination when no discrimination occurred.

  • Hearing

    Nov 28, 2017

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Wrongful Term

HAROLD WINSTON VS COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES

First, Plaintiff has chosen to litigate his FEHA claims in court. He has obtained right to sue letters, permitting him to sue, which he did. And as discussed above, Plaintiff is not challenging any discriminatory employment practices in the Civil Service Matters. Second, the Civil Service Matters are not resolving the FEHA claims, as they are not investigating or adjudicating any discrimination or harassment.

  • Hearing

    Aug 05, 2020

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Other Employment

KATHLEEN COKER VS. STERN'S PRODUCTS, INC

"[C]ommonly necessary personnel management actions ... do not come within the meaning of harassment. ... These actions may retrospectively be found discriminatory if based on improper motives, but in that event the remedies provided by the FEHA are those for discrimination, not harassment. ... This significant distinction underlies the differential treatment of harassment and discrimination in the FEHA." Roby v. McKesson Corp. (2009) 47 Cal. 4th 686, 707.

  • Hearing

    Mar 30, 2010

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Other Employment

KATHRYN STOCKS VS COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES

The operative First Amended Complaint was filed on 9/2/15 and asserts causes of action for (1) violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act, (2) FEHA disability discrimination, (3) FMLA interference, (4) CFRA interference, (5) Pregnancy Disability Leave Law interference, (6) FEHA failure to provide reasonable accommodations, (7) FEHA failure to engage in the interactive process, (8) FEHA retaliation, and (9) FEHA failure to prevent discrimination and retaliation.

  • Hearing

    Jan 12, 2017

HANTASH VS. INTERTEK USA INC

Eighth Cause of Action for Disability Discrimination under FEHA Defendants argue that Plaintiff was not disabled "within the meaning of FEHA" and that the allegations, at best, show a situational or temporary impairment which is not a disability within the meaning of FEHA. Plaintiff alleges a mental disability of depression (See FAC page 4, paragraph 13) and alleges that Defendants were aware of his actual or perceived disability.

  • Hearing

    Oct 18, 2017

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Other Employment

JOSLIN VS. YEAGER FOOT & ANKLE CENTER, INC

For the purpose of FEHA, to “regularly employ” traditionally meant that the employer has at least five employees for each working day in any 20 consecutive calendar weeks in the calendar year in which the discrimination is alleged to have occurred, or in the preceding calendar year. See former 2 CCR § 11008(d)(1). On July 5, 2019, the Fair Employment and Housing Council (“FEHC”) revised the definition of “employer” in statutory changes under the FEHA.

  • Hearing

    Aug 05, 2019

MATTHEW CONDON VS DAW INDUSTRIES INC

On July 16, 2015, the California Legislature passed Assembly Bill No. 987, which protects against retaliation when an individual requests accommodation for a disability under the FEHA. (Assem. Bill No. 987 (2015–2016 Reg. Sess.) § 2.) The amendment took effect on January 1, 2016, and applies only prospectively. (Ibid.; see McClung v. Emp't Dev. Dep't (2004) 34 Cal.4th 467, 475–77 (concluding amendment to the FEHA regarding individual liability for harassment applied only prospectively).)

  • Hearing

    Mar 08, 2017

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Wrongful Term

YVETTE DARLENE PEREZ VS INLAND EMPIRE HEALTH PLAN, ET AL.

Perez filed the FAC on October 3, 2019 alleging 14 causes of action: FEHA Discrimination FEHA Harassment FEHA Retaliation FEHA Failure to Provide Reasonable Accommodation FEHA Failure to Prevent Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation Violation of CFRA Intentional infliction of emotional distress General negligence Negligent hiring, supervision and retention Fraud/deceit Violation of Labor Code § 1102.5 Breach of express oral contract not to terminate without good cause Breach of implied-in-fact

  • Hearing

    Jan 27, 2020

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Wrongful Term

GIOVANELLA BOWEN VS PINK LOTUS ANCILLARY SERVICES LLC ET AL

Plaintiff asserts causes of action for (1) wrongful constructive discharge in violation of public policy, (2) FEHA gender discrimination, (3) FEHA retaliation, (4) FEHA gender harassment, (5) FEHA disability discrimination, (6) FEHA failure to accommodate, (7) FEHA failure to engage in the interactive process, and (8) failure to pay wages. On 9/28/16, the Court dismissed PLAS without prejudice pursuant to Plaintiff’s request.

  • Hearing

    Apr 06, 2017

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Wrongful Term

JOSE ABEL JUAREZ PEREZ VS TOP SPEED TRUCKING INC ET AL

., for: (1) Race/Color/National Origin/Ancestry Discrimination; (2) Religious Discrimination in Violation of FEHA; (3) Failure to Accommodate Religious Practices in Violation of FEHA; (4) Disability Discrimination in Violation of FEHA and Public Policy; (5) Failure to Accommodate Disability/Engage in a Good Faith Interactive Process in Violation of FEHA; (6) Retaliation for Opposing Practices Forbidden by FEHA and For Requesting Accommodation in Violation of FEHA; (7) Hostile Work Environment Harassment in Violation

  • Hearing

    Jan 04, 2019

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Wrongful Term

ELLAMIRA MARTINEZ VS ANITAS MEXICAN FOODS CORP

On April 12, 2018, Plaintiff filed the operative Complaint alleging causes of action for (1) failure to provide lawful meal periods, (2) failure to provide lawful rest periods, (3) unfair competition, (4) unpaid wages, (5) failure to provide accurate wage statements, (6) FEHA discrimination, (7) FEHA failure to accommodate, (8) FEHA failure to engage in the interactive process, (9) FEHA retaliation, (10) FEHA failure to prevent, (11) wrongful termination, and (12) CFRA retaliation.

  • Hearing

    Aug 02, 2018

EDWARD BANDA VS LOS ANGELES HOMELESS SERVICES AUTHORITY ET A

The operative Second Amended Complaint asserts causes of action for (1) FEHA disability discrimination, (3) FEHA retaliation, (5) FEHA failure to accommodate, (6) FEHA failure to engage in the interactive process, and (7) FEHA failure to prevent. Defendants County and City demur to the SAC. In connection with the demurrers, they each request judicial notice of their charters, the Joint Exercise of Powers Agreement, and various records concerning the LAHSA and the County; all RJNs are granted.

  • Hearing

    Feb 23, 2017

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Wrongful Term

WEI VS CONEJO VALLEY UNIFIED SCHOOL

("CFRA"); 5) perceived and/or sex/gender harassment in violation FEHA; 6) perceived and/or sex/gender discrimination in violation of FEHA; 7) perceived and/or sex/gender retaliation in violation of FEHA; 8) retaliation for engaging in protected activity in violation of FEHA; and 9) declaratory relief. The District demurs to each of the first eight causes of action.

  • Hearing

    Nov 10, 2020

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Other Employment

LUNGIN VS. ULTA BEAUTY COSMETICS LLC

Count three, gender discrimination in violation of the FEHA: Count three alleges plaintiff was subjected to gender discrimination in violation of the FEHA. ROA 1, complaint, paragraphs 38-39. Count three for gender discrimination fails due to absence of an adverse employment action. See Part 4B above (count two, disability discrimination). D.

  • Hearing

    Jan 16, 2020

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Wrongful Term

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