Non‑Disclosure Provisions in Settlement Agreements in the Wake of #MeToo

The #MeToo movement first gained traction in October 2017 following high-profile sexual abuse allegations against movie producer Harvey Weinstein. In the months that followed, hundreds of thousands of people posted their own stories of sexual harassment and abuse to social media using #MeToo, thus spurring legislators to act quickly in response. One area on which legislators focused was the use of non-disclosure provisions in confidential severance, separation and settlement agreements. In a guest article, Morgan Lewis partner Leni D. Battaglia discusses recent laws enacted in the states of California, New Jersey and New York – where many private fund managers have offices and employees – that restrict the use of non-disclosure provisions in settlement and other agreements with employees, as well as provides practical guidance on how fund managers can draft compliant non-disclosure provisions in those agreements. See “What Fund Managers Need to Know About the Legislative Response to #MeToo” (May 3, 2018); and “How Investment Managers Can Prevent and Manage Claims of Harassment in the Age of #MeToo” (Dec. 14, 2017). For additional insight from another Morgan Lewis partner on employment matters, see our three-part series: “Best Practices for Fund Managers to Develop an Employee Discipline Framework That Fosters Predictability in the Face of Inconsistent Laws” (Feb. 8, 2018); “Best Practices for Fund Managers When Investigating and Documenting Employee Discipline” (Feb. 15, 2018); and “Best Practices for Fund Managers to Ensure a Fair Process When Disciplining Employees” (Feb. 22, 2018).

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