Employment Partners Marcie Isom and Michael Lucey received a complete defense verdict in Santa Clara Superior Court on behalf of Santa Clara University after a nearly three week jury trial. The plaintiff, a former Senior Lecturer in the Department of Theater and Dance at Santa Clara University, sued the University for age discrimination and breach of contract. She alleged that the University's decision to end her appointment as a Senior Lecturer was motivated by her age. She also alleged that the University did not have good cause to end her employment. The plaintiff asked the jury to award more than $2.5 million.
Marcie and Michael successfully argued that the decision was made based upon the lack of a programmatic need for the plaintiff's position, and that her age had nothing to do with the decision. After deliberating for less than 3 hours, the jury came back with a unanimous verdict on the age discrimination claim and a 10-2 decision on the breach of contract claim.