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Meland v. Weber (9th Cir. 20-15762 6/21/21) Women on Corporate Boards/14th Amendment  

By June 21, 2021June 26th, 202114th Amendment, Corporate Law, Discrimination

The panel reversed the district court’s dismissal for lack of standing of an action brought by a corporate shareholder challenging the constitutionality of California Senate Bill 826, which requires all public corporations headquartered in California to have a minimum number of females on their boards of directors. Plaintiff alleged that Senate Bill 826 (SB 826) requires shareholders to discriminate on the basis of sex when exercising their corporate voting rights, in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment. The panel held that plaintiff plausibly alleged that SB 826 requires or encourages him to discriminate based on sex. Plaintiff therefore adequately alleged an injury in fact, the only Article III standing element at issue, and thus had Article III standing to challenge SB 826. Plaintiff’s alleged injury was also distinct from any injury to the corporation, and he could bring his own Fourteenth Amendment challenge. Thus, plaintiff had prudential standing to challenge SB 826. Finally, plaintiff’s injury was ongoing and neither speculative or hypothetical, and the district court could grant meaningful relief. This case was therefore ripe and not moot.