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Interference with Contract or Economic Advantage Claims in SLAPPs

 

Commission of an act with the intent to interfere with or cause a breach of contract between two people, or hinder a business relationship which exists between those persons.

Sound familiar?

Interference with contract or economic advantage is a common cause of action (claim) in SLAPPs. Although not all such claims are subject to the anti-SLAPP law, if you’ve been sued for interference with contract or economic advantage, you may well have been SLAPPed.

The case below is an example of an interference with contract or economic advantage SLAPP decided by the California Court of Appeal.

1-800 Contacts, Inc. v. Steinberg
(2003, 2d District – 107 Cal.App.4th 568, 132 Cal.Rptr.2d 789)

Plaintiff sued Steinberg for business damages, alleging that Steinberg had colluded with plaintiff’s former employee to promote legislative action adverse to plaintiff’s business by facilitating meetings between the former employee and representatives of professional associations. The trial court granted Steinberg’s anti-SLAPP motion to strike the entire complaint on the grounds that the cause of action was conduct “in furtherance of free speech or petition in connection with a public issue” and plaintiff had not demonstrated a probability of prevailing on its complaint, including counts of inducing breach contract and inducing breach of fiduciary duties. The appellate court affirmed.

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Site last updated August 21, 2014 @ 11:26 am; This content last updated July 29, 2014 @ 9:52 am