Appellant employee challenged a judgment from the Superior Court of Stanislaus County (California), which entered summary judgment for appellee employers on appellant’s wrongful termination action.

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Overview

Appellees terminated appellant’s employment for violating sexual harassment policy and procedures after two female employee’s reported that appellee had sexually harassed them. Appellant filed a lawsuit against appellees for breach of implied contract. The trial court granted summary judgment to appellees. On appeal, the court found that although appellees focused on the subjective reasonableness of its good faith determination, they included ample evidence going to the objective reasonableness of that belief. Appellant did not offer additional evidence on the appropriateness of the investigation or the reasonableness of the termination decision. The court further found that appellant conceded that appellees determined in honesty and good faith that good cause existed for appellant’s discharge. Appellees had a written policy and designated a particular employee to investigate claims. The court concluded that appellant did not raise a triable issue of fact as to whether appellees’ decision to terminated his employment constituted a reasoned conclusion support by substantial evidence. Judgment was affirmed.

Outcome

The trial court’s judgment that entered summary judgment for appellees in appellant’s wrongful termination action was affirmed because no triable issues of material fact existed related to appellees’ decision to terminate appellant for violating sexual harassment policy.

Procedural Posture

May 8, 2021