What is Retaliation in Violation of FEHA?

The California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) makes it an unlawful employment practice to terminate or otherwise discriminate against an employee because of the race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, genetic information marital status, sex, gender, gender identity, gender expression, age, sexual orientation, or military and veteran status of any person. Gov. Code, § 12940(a).

Section 12940(h) makes it unlawful for an employer to retaliate against a person “because the person has opposed any practices forbidden under this part or because the person has filed a complaint, testified, or assisted in any proceeding under this part.”

A prima facie case for retaliation requires a plaintiff to show that:

  1. she engaged in a protected activity,
  2. the employer subjected plaintiff to an adverse employment action, and
  3. the protected activity and the employer’s adverse action were causally connected

Nealy v. City of Santa Monica (2015) 234 Cal.App.4th 359, 380; Yanowitz v. L’Oreal USA, Inc. (2005) 36 Cal.4th 1028, 1042.

The activity “protected” by this statute is opposition to “practices forbidden” by FEHA or the filing of a complaint, testimony, or the provision of assistance in any FEHA proceeding. Gov. Code, § 12940(h).

Whether an employee has suffered an adverse employment action is a required element. Jones v. Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation (2007) 152 Cal.App.4th 1367, 1380 (“Critical to an inquiry regarding a retaliation claim arising under FEHA is whether the plaintiff suffered an ‘adverse employment action.’”)

“Minor or relatively trivial adverse actions or conduct by employers or fellow employees that, from an objective perspective, are reasonably likely to do no more than anger or upset an employee cannot properly be viewed as materially affecting the terms, conditions, or privileges of employment and are not actionable, but adverse treatment that is reasonably likely to impair a reasonable employee's job performance or prospects for advancement or promotion falls within the reach of the antidiscrimination provisions of Government Code section 12940, subdivision (a).” Horsford v. Board of Trustees of California State University (2005) 132 Cal.App.4th 359, 373 (citations omitted.)

A causal link “may be established by an inference from circumstantial evidence, such as the employer’s knowledge that the employee engaged in protected activities and proximity in time between the protected action and allegedly retaliatory employment decision.” Morgan v. Regents of Univ. of Cal. (2000) 88 Cal.App.4th 52, 69 (citations omitted).

Non-employer individuals are not personally liable for their role in retaliation. Jones v. Lodge at Torrey Pines Partnership (2008) 42 Cal.4th 1158, 1173.

Useful Resources for Retaliation in Violation of FEHA

Recent Documents on Retaliation in Violation of FEHA

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CM-200 ATTORNEY OR PARTY WITHOUT ATTORNEY (Name, State Bar number, and address) |_Ghrstopher B. Mandarich SB 220083: s Ainy Marshall SB961601; Amber Swearingen-Ojuri $B324689; David C. McGaffey SB315632; MANDARICH LAW GROUP, LLP. P 0 Box 109032 Chicago, IL 60610, TELEPHONE NO 877.285 4918 FAX NO. 818 888 1260 E-MAIL ADDRESS (Optional) ATTORNEY FOR (Name)* Cavalry SPV I, LLC SUPERIOR COURT OF CALIFORNIA, COUNTY OFBUTTE STREET ADDRESS’ 1775 CONCORD AVE. MAILING ADDRESS: cITy AND zip ...

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CM-200 ATTORNEY OR PARTY WITHOUT ATTORNEY (Name, State Bar number, and address): t-Terry A. Duree, Esq. SBN: 61008 GENTS Terry A. Duree, Inc. 622 Jackson St Fairfield, CA 94533 FF — Superior Court of Califomia__ = TELEPHONE No: 707-422-8933 FAX NO. (Optional): | County of Butte I E-MAIL ADDRESS (Optional): ATTORNEY FOR (Name):Kelsti Group, Inc. L L SUPERIOR COURT OF CALIFORNIA, COUNTY OF BUTTE E E street appress: Chico Courthouse maine aopress: 1775 Concord Avenue D Ki Fiener, Clerk...

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