Ashley Judd’s sexual harassment claim against Harvey Weinstein is back on.
A federal appeals court panel on Wednesday said the actress, who has accused Weinstein of sexually harassing her in his hotel room in the 1990s, can go forward with a harassment claim against him that had been thrown out, Variety and Bloomberg report.
A lower court previously decided Judd couldn’t pursue her sexual harassment claim against the disgraced producer because she was not an employee of his at the time of the alleged incident, according to Variety. But the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has now reversed that decision, saying the district court “erred” because the relationship between Weinstein and Judd “consisted of an inherent power imbalance wherein Weinstein was uniquely situated to exercise coercion or leverage over Judd by virtue of his professional position and influence as a top producer in Hollywood.”
Judd came forward with her claims against Weinstein in 2017 and sued him in 2018, alleging he damaged her career after she denied his advances. At the time, she said Weinstein, who has since been convicted of rape and sentenced to more than two decades in prison, must “be held accountable for that conduct and for the ways in which he’s damaged careers.” Judd’s lawyer told Deadline on Wednesday that the appeals court’s decision is an “important victory” and that “we look forward to pursuing this claim against Mr. Weinstein at trial.”