California provides a special procedural remedy whenever a lawsuit implicates a defendant's First Amendment right to petition or free speech. The procedure is commonly referred to as the "anti-SLAPP." (SLAPP is an acronym for Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation.) Under this procedure, the trial court evaluates the merits of the lawsuit using a summary judgment like process, often at an early stage of the litigation. In a recent unpublished decision, the California Court of Appeal affirmed the propriety of applying this procedure when a plaintiff is ...
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