BILL NUMBER: AB 2475 AMENDED
AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY APRIL 8, 2010
INTRODUCED BY Assembly Member Beall
FEBRUARY 19, 2010
An act to amend Section 16500 of the Welfare and
Institutions Code, relating to child welfare services.
An act to add Section 43.94 to the Civil Code, relating to immunity.
LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST
AB 2475, as amended, Beall. Child welfare services.
Existing law grants immunity from civil suit to judges for acts
performed in the exercise of their judicial functions. Under the
concept of quasi-judicial immunity, this absolute judicial immunity
has been extended to persons other than judges if those persons act
in a judicial or quasi-judicial capacity, including neutral 3rd
parties engaged in attempts to settle disputes.
This bill would provide that the doctrine of judicial immunity or
quasi-judicial immunity shall not apply to exonerate any 3rd party
who is engaged in mediation, conciliation, evaluation, or similar
dispute resolution efforts under any statute or contract from
liability for any act performed within that capacity.
Existing law requires the state, through the State Department of
Social Services and county welfare departments, to establish and
support a public system of statewide child welfare services, with the
intent that all children are entitled to be safe and free from abuse
This bill would make a technical, nonsubstantive change to this
Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: no.
State-mandated local program: no.
THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:
SECTION 1. Section 43.94 is added to the
Civil Code , to read:
43.94. (a) The doctrine of judicial immunity or quasi-judicial
immunity shall not apply to exonerate any third party who is engaged
in mediation, conciliation, evaluation, or similar dispute resolution
efforts under any statute or contract from liability for any act
performed within that capacity.
(b) This section shall apply, but not be limited, to all of the
(1) Mediators, guardians ad litem, therapists, receivers,
bankruptcy trustees, and other persons appointed by the courts for
(2) Persons whose work product comes into the judicial process to
be used by the court even though they were not court-appointed, such
as social workers and probation department employees.
(3) Persons involved in alternative methods of dispute resolution,
such as mediators and neutral factfinders, who function apart from
the courts pursuant to private agreement, including mediators,
conciliators, evaluators, and marriage and family therapists.
(c) This section does not apply to any judicial officer,
subordinate judicial officer, or arbitrator.
SECTION 1. Section 16500 of the Welfare and
Institutions Code is amended to read:
16500. The state, through the department and county welfare
departments, shall establish and support a public system of statewide
child welfare services to be developed as rapidly as possible and to
be available in each county of the state. All counties shall
establish and maintain specialized organizational entities within the
county welfare department that shall have sole responsibility for
operating the child welfare services program.
The Legislature hereby declares its intent, in providing for this
statewide system of child welfare services, that all children are
entitled to be safe and free from abuse and neglect.