An Anti-SLAPP motion was properly granted against employer’s suit against terminated employee’s lawyer for disclosing allegedly confidential documents that the employee had taken with him from the employer after being fired. The lawyer used the documents in the employee’s qui tam False Claims Act suit which alleged that employer overcharged Medicare. The lawyer also sent the documents to lawyers for medical service providers who alleged that employer underpaid them. Both activities were protected under 425.16(e) as being in furtherance of the employee’s right to petition and as being communications about a matter of public interest with respect to the medical providers. Overcharging Medicare and underpaying providers to Medicare patients were matters of public interest. The employer did not establish a probability of success since the litigation privilege protected defendant lawyer’s conduct.
California Court of Appeal, Fourth District, Division 3 (Ikola, J.); March 12, 2018; 2018 WL 1250482