Abed v. Western Dental Services, Inc.Annotate this Case
Western Dental accepts dental assistant student externs. Externs who want to be considered for full-time employment must submit a written application, undergo a background check, and be interviewed. Western posted job openings both to advertise actual open positions and to create a pool of applicants for positions that might open in the future. In May 2015, a requisition for a dental assistant in the Napa office was approved, and a solicitation for applications was publicly posted. It is unclear whether this solicitation was posted to create a pool of applicants. Abed began her Napa office externship in May 2015. She was pregnant but did not inform Western. Abed’s supervisor completed three evaluations of Abed. Abed consistently received high marks. Eventually, her co-workers discovered that Abed was pregnant. According to Abed, Strickling stated, "if she’s pregnant, I don’t want to hire her.” Abed claims she was told there were no positions available at the Napa office. Abel sued under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (Gov. Code 12900). The trial court ruled in Western’s favor because Abed had not submitted an application. The court of appeal reversed. Even though Abed never applied for a job, she raised triable issues of material fact as to whether Western intentionally discriminated against her by falsely telling her that no position was available.