The Superior Court for the County of Santa Clara recently granted a public entity defendant’s motion for summary judgment, dismissing the plaintiff’s complaint for discrimination based on gender and defamation.  The court held that the defendants sustained their initial burden in establishing both that the plaintiff had not established a prima facie case of discrimination, and also that defendants advanced legitimate, non-discriminatory reasons for the plaintiff’s removal as Chair of a University department.  With regard to the defamation cause of action, the Court held that plaintiff’s claims were barred due to the common interest doctrine and because the alleged publications were either true or were opinion.

Partner Maria M. Lampasona handled the motion and hearing on behalf of the defendants.

See Lydia Ortega v. Board of Trustees of the California State University, et al., Santa Clara County Superior Court Case No. 17CV309628