The anti-SLAPP statute (Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation), California Code of Civil Procedure section 425.16, is commonly used outside the employment litigation context to test the merits of a lawsuit at an early stage in the litigation. A recent case, McConnell v. Innovative Artists Talent and Literary Agency, Inc. illustrates the hesitation of courts to allow these motions in employment litigation.Continue Reading California Court of Appeal Rejects Anti-SLAPP Motion in a Retaliation and Wrongful Termination Case

In World Financial Group, Inc. v. HBW Insurance & Financial Services, Inc. the California Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District rejected an Anti-SLAPP motion to strike in a breach of contract, theft of trade secrets, and unfair competition case. The defendants moved to strike the complaint under California’s Anti-SLAPP statute, claiming that their activities in soliciting the customers and employees of their previous employer were protected speech involving a "matter of public interest," namely their pursuit of employment under the public policies expressed in California Business and Professions Code section 16600 (California’s prohibition against restraint of trade). The court upheld the trial court’s denial of the motion, finding that solicitation of customers in a business context was not protected activity for the purposes of the anti-SLAPP statute.Continue Reading California Court of Appeal Rejects Anti-SLAPP Motion in Trade Secrets/B&P Section 16600 Case