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Allegedly defamatory emails that Simplified sent Trinity and a co-defendant seeking documents and other information for its later-filed lawsuit were protected activity for purposes of the Anti-SLAPP statute (CCP 425.16(e)).  The emails were also protected by the absolute litigation privilege, so Trinity could not prove a probability of success on the merits.  The trial court properly granted Simplified's Anti-SLAPP motion… Read More

Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court (2018) 4 Cal.5th 903 ane the ABC test it adopted for distinguishing employees from independent contractors for purposes of IWC wage orders applies retroactively to all cases pending on the date Dynamex became final.  Since Dynamex decided an issue of first impression, no one could reasonably have relied on the prior uncertain state… Read More

A creditor or other holder of property of the bankrupt estate does not violate the automatic stay (11 USC 362(a)(3)) by merely continuing to hold that property after the debtor files a bankruptcy petition.  Instead, 11 USC 542 governs the circumstances under which the bankruptcy court can compel a holder of property of the bankrupt estate to turn the property… Read More

Under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act, an employee may take 12 weeks of unpaid family or medical leave in a 12 month period.  This decision holds that when the employee works on a 7 days on, 7 days off schedule, the off days as well as the on days are counted toward the 12 weeks of allowed leave. Read More

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's regulation interpreting 49 U.S.C. § 31141(c) governing preemption of state law relating to commercial motor vehicle safety was entitled to Chevron deference.  The regulation reasonably found California's meal and rest breaks statutes preempted by federal law since the state laws required more frequent and longer rest and meal breaks than federal law and with… Read More

A subpoena served on a third party witness to produce business records is a deposition subpoena.  If the subpoenaed witness objects rather than producing the requested documents (in whole or in part), the subpoenaing party has 60 days to move to compel compliance with the subpoena.  Meet and confer efforts in the meanwhile do not continue the 60 day deadline… Read More

Negligent misrepresentation differs from intentional misrepresentation on at least two elements.  For fraud, the defendant must know the representation is false; whereas, for negligent misrepresentation, lack of a reasonable basis to believe the representation is true will suffice.  Also, for negligent misrepresentation, no showing of intent to deceive is required, just an intent to induce reliance on the misstated fact. … Read More

On remand from the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeal decides that the plaintiff hospital cannot prevail on its claim of equitable tolling of the statute of limitations to petition for relief from the state agency's decision against it.  The decision clearly stated that it was effective immediately.  The state APA sections (Gov. Code 11521 and 11523) clearly provide that… Read More

The district court properly dismissed this false labeling suit against Target.  The label of its biotin food supplement stated "helps support healthy fair and skin."  Under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. § 343(r)(6)(B)), FDA regulation of food supplement labels preempts state law.  Here, the label met the FDA's three requirements for such a label.  Target had… Read More

The trial court did not abuse its discretion in granting defendant's forum non conveniens motion, but did err in dismissing the action rather than merely staying it.  The suit was by residents of China against a California resident regarding alleged misuse of funds donated to the defendant's charitable foundation for his personal benefit.  China was an available forum.  It was… Read More

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