Abir Cohen Treyzon Salo, LLP v. LahijiAnnotate this Case
After a client fired her attorney and his firm, the firm placed a lien on the client's further recovery and filed suit against the client's daughter for defamation. The Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court's grant of the daughter's motion under the anti-SLAPP law.
The court held that Bel Air Internet, LLC v. Morales (2018) 20 Cal.App.5th 924, 929, foreclosed the firm's argument that, because the daughter denied making the posts, plaintiffs' cause of action was not arising from any act of the daughter. The court agreed with the trial court's conclusion that plaintiffs did not make a prima facie showing that the daughter was legally responsible for the Yelp review postings that underly their defamation claim. In this case, the posts themselves did not establish that the daughter was the author or poster, because none of the posts were in her name and their content suggested that the author was the client, the one represented by the attorney and law firm. The court rejected plaintiffs' remaining arguments and held that the daughter was entitled to her costs on appeal.