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Seyfarth was hired to investigate a professor's claim that she was discriminated against by Cal. State University Fullerton.  It performed the investigation and submitted a report to the university administration concluding there was no merit to the professor's claims. After unsuccessfully suing a host of other defendants, the professor sued Seyfarth, claiming the report and investigation were biased, etc.  Seyfarth… Read More

This decision holds that the Anti-SLAPP motion in this case was properly denied because the suit fits within CCP 425.17(b)'s exception for suits in the public interest.  The plaintiff did not seek any relief greater than or different from the relief sought for the general public or a class of which the plaintiff was a member. Seeking individualized relief, such… Read More

Following prior 9th Circuit precedent, this decision holds that an order denying an Anti-SLAPP motion to dismiss is immediately appealable under the collateral order doctrine--unless the order denies the motion because the claim fits within one of CP 425.17's exceptions to the Anti-SLAPP statute--but in concurrences two of the panel's three judges urge the full court to overrule the prior… Read More

Applying the test for conduct in furtherance of First Amendment activities stated in v. DoubleVerify, Inc. (2019) 7 Cal.5th 133, this decision holds that while the production of a TV program about rich Asian-Americans' adjustment to life in LA was an exercise of constitutionally protected expression, the wrongful conduct alleged in the complaint--denying the plaintiff a role in producing… Read More

A news organization sent UC Irvine a records request under the California Public Records Act for documents about a professor's postpublication communications about her articles which UCI had withdrawn from publication due to concerns about plagarism and accuracy of citations.  The professor filed this lawsuit to prevent UCI from producing documents in response to the request. Held, the suit arose… Read More

When a defendant files an Anti-SLAPP motion, he must identify which portions of the complaint he wishes to strike and show that those portions of the complaint allege conduct that is protected under CCP 425.16(e).  If the defendant moves to strike the whole complaint without identifying smaller portions of the complaint, the court may deny the motion if it finds… Read More

While the act of demoting or firing a city employee or official is not protected activity, city council members' votes and debates are protected speech under the Anti-SLAPP statute.  Here, a city treasurer sued city council members individually (and not the city) for acts taken to deprive her office of most of its functions and salary.  Held, the claim against… Read More

This decision holds that the trial court properly denied defendants' Anti-SLAPP motion because defendants failed to show that the suit arose from protected speech.  The suit sought declaratory and injunctive relief to invalidate AB 1936 (2021-2022 Reg. Sess.) which renamed Hastings College of Law (due to Hastings' alleged involvement in the massacre of Native Americans in Mendocino County).  The legislation… Read More

Former nanny sued parent-employers on four wage-and-hour claims and also for defamation based on statements parents made to a friend the parents involved in an attempt to obtain a release of claims by the nanny in exchange for a severance package.  Held, the statements were not protected speech under the Anti-SLAPP statute since litigation was not then threatened or seriously… Read More

Plaintiff made a sufficient showing of constitutional "malice"--i.e., knowledge of falsity or reckless with respect to truth--to survive an Anti-SLAPP motion to dismiss.  In this case, plaintiff, an opposing candidate, sued Maxine Waters for falsely accusing him of having been dishonorably discharged by the Navy.  Plaintiff showed Waters an official-looking document saying he was honorably discharged.  Waters didn't investigate whether… Read More

Reversing an Anti-SLAPP order striking plaintiff's complaint, this decision holds that Civ. Code 1788.17 incorporates into the Rosenthal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, the strict liability standard of 15 USC 1692(e) for false statements made in collecting a debt or regarding the legal status of the debt.  Thus, the debt collector may be held liable under the Rosenthal Act for… Read More

Former paramour sued current flame for intentional interference with paramour's settlement agreement with her ex.  Flame was a lawyer.  She satisfied her burden on the first step of the Anti-SLAPP analysis by showing that the interference claim was based on flame's counseling ex in anticipation of litigation with paramour.  This was protected activity whether the ex was already flame's client… Read More

When an Anti-SLAPP defendant lodges a factual challenge, district courts may properly consider extrinsic evidence in evaluating whether a defendant has met her prima facie burden under either step of the Anti-SLAPP analysis.   If a defendant moves to strike “on purely legal arguments,” courts must analyze the motion under Rules 8 and 12, but where a defendant asserts “a factual… Read More

The trial court correctly denied the Anti-SLAPP motion brought by Kaufman who was named as the real party in interest in this petition for writ of administrative mandamus to challenge San Francisco's approval of Kaufman's building permit and mitigated negative declaration under CEQA to remodel a home in the city.  Though Kaufman's successful appeal to the city from its planning… Read More

The trial court properly granted defendants' Anti-SLAPP motion.  Despite plaintiff's allegation that defendant had engaged in extortion, this case was distinguishable from Flatley v. Mauro (2006) 39 Cal.4th 299 because defendant denied that he had threatened to report plaintiff to the State Bar unless he settled defendant's client's suit for refund of an unearned retainer fee.  His emails, though contentious,… Read More

This decision affirms an Anti-SLAPP dismissal of a malicious prosecution action against a mandatory reporter of elder abuse for an allegedly knowingly false report of elder abuse by plaintiff, accusing her of attempting to kill an elder by smothering him with a pillow.  Plaintiff also claimed that defendant then coerced the elder into corroborating the false report, leading to criminal… Read More

This decision affirms an order denying an Anti-SLAPP motion brought against a trust beneficiary's surcharge action against the trustee for wasting the trust's funds in pursuing meritless litigation.  The decision determines that the gist of the action and the harm alleged is the waste of trust funds--unprotected conduct--not the filing and funding of the meritless litigation which would be protected… Read More

The trial court correctly granted defendant's anti-SLAPP motion to strike plaintiff's Rosenthal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act suit because plaintiff could not show a likelihood of prevailing on the claim.  Civ. Code 1788.17 incorporates provisions of the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, including 15 USC 1692e which forbids false statements in attempts to collect debts and misrepresentation of the… Read More

The trial court correctly granted defendant's anti-SLAPP motion to strike plaintiff's Rosenthal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act suit because plaintiff could not show a likelihood of prevailing on the claim.  Civ. Code 1788.17 incorporates provisions of the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, including 15 USC 1692e which forbids false statements in attempts to collect debts and misrepresentation of the… Read More

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