Gov. Jerry Brown signs bill that bans secret settlements related to sexual misconduct

Posted at 3:30 PM, Sep 30, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-30 17:55:37-04

Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill that will ban the use of secret settlements and non-disclosure agreements related to specified sexual misconduct, including sexual assault and sexual harassment Sunday.

The bill does not stop people from entering settlement agreements but it bans secret settlements and a key provision within settlements used to silence victims.

The law will take effect Jan. 1, 2019. It will apply to both public and private employers in California including the California State Legislature.

California State Senator Connie Leyva wrote the bill.

“For decades, secret settlements have been used by wealthy and well-connected perpetrators to offend repeatedly with no public accountability,” Senator Leyva said.  “SB 820 will finally lift the curtain of secrecy that has continued to protect these perpetrators by forcing their victims to remain silent. This critical legislation will empower victims and offer them the opportunity to finally say #TimesUp to those that have hurt them.”

The bill was introduced in January 2018. It received the support of Attorney General Xavier Becerra, American Association of University Women, California Employment Lawyers Association, Congress of California Seniors and many other organizations.