California AB 933 Passes Protecting Sexual Assault, Harassment, Discrimination Survivors Facing Defamation Lawsuits

California AB 933 Passes

There has been a troubling past pattern where perpetrators of sexual assault, harassment, or discrimination sue their victims for defamation in response to those victims speaking out against them. Through the passage of Assembly Bill 933, survivors of sexual assault, harassment, or discrimination will be better protected against frivolous countersuits from predators seeking to silence them. The law makes a victim’s comments about sexual assault, harassment, or discrimination protected against defamation lawsuits if the allegation is not knowingly false or made recklessly. This means greater protections for survivors who speak, without malice, about their experience. It also means that it will be harder for perpetrators to retaliate against and intimidate those they wronged. Critically, the law also makes it so that a survivor who successfully defends themselves in a defamation lawsuit can recover their attorney’s fees and damages.

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