Gagen, Mccoy, McMahon, Koss, Markowitz & Fanucci Inter-Office Memorandum
Trinity Risk Management v. Simplified Labor Staffing Solutions, Inc. (2021) 59 Cal.App.5th 995. This is a SLAPP matter. The court held that the amendment of a complaint did not cause a SLAPP motion to be moot with respect to a cross-complaint and that the cross-defendants had met their burden of showing that emails which formed the factual basis for the cross-complaint were acts in furtherance of the cross-defendant’s constitutional right of petition and protected activity. The emails were communications made in anticipation of litigation and communications made during litigation and the litigation privilege therefore defeated the defamation cause of action. The content of the emails was related to the litigation. The communications were made by litigants or other participants authorized by law and there was no requirement of a meet and confer process before the SLAPP motion was filed.
Borman v. Brown (2021) 59 Cal.App.5th 1048. This was a case in which a patient sued a doctor and medical facility for fraud and deceit based on the claim that the doctor had made a false statement that a brow lift would not be covered by insurance and so recommended a procedure called a droopy eyelid and brow. The court held that even if the doctor lacked a financial incentive for making a misrepresentation of this nature, that did not mean that the physician did not intend for the patient to rely on the alleged statement made that a brow lift would not be covered by insurance. Proof of financial incentive is not necessary in order to prove intent to induce reliance. The patient produced expert testimony from which a jury could reasonably find that the doctor erroneously believed that a brow lift would not be covered by insurance given the patient’s physical condition, and thus the doctor negligently told the patient that a brow lift would not be covered by insurance.
Gregory L. McCoy