Tag Archives: timeliness

DC Court of Appeals Affirms February 2012 Denial of Anti-SLAPP Motion in Newmyer v. Huntington

Waaaaaaay back in early 2012, after a defendant (Huntington) filed a counterclaim against a plaintiff (Newmyer) for defamation, false light and related torts, Newmyer responded by filing an anti-SLAPP motion (you can read more about the case here).  Newmyer’s anti-SLAPP motion was denied by the Superior Court judge, who found that it was filed too late (although he stated that, if he believed the counterclaim was a true SLAPP, “the court might very well conclude that the ameliorative purpose of the Act requires a more flexible interpretation of the forty-five day framework”). The Superior Court did not need to wrestle …

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Another judge holds that DC anti-SLAPP statute can be used in federal court

On the same day that the DC Circuit issued its decision in Sherrod v. Breitbart, which avoided deciding the “Erie” question by resolving the case on timeliness grounds, another DC federal court judge held that the DC anti-SLAPP statute can be applied in federal court, and granted the defendants’ anti-SLAPP motion.  (For prior posts on the background and arguments in the Boley case, see here and here). 

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DC Circuit Affirms Denial of anti-SLAPP Motion in Sherrod v. Breitbart on Timeliness Grounds

This morning, the DC Circuit issued a short opinion in which it affirmed the District Court’s ruling in Sherrod v. Breitbart, which had denied the defendants’ anti-SLAPP motion.  Because the District Court’s ruling was not a final judgment ending the action, the DC Circuit first considered whether it even had jurisdiction to hear the appeal.  After canvassing decisions from other circuits and a “terse, unpublished order” from the DC Court of Appeals, the court sidestepped the question because it found that its precedent on another issue completely resolved the case.  In other words, the court assumed (without deciding) that it had …

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Sherrod Oral Argument Suggests DC Circuit Might Not Resolve Erie Issue

Unfortunately, I was not able to attend this morning’s oral argument in the Sherrod appeal.  The Legal Times’ summary is here.  The Washington Post summary is here.  And another summary is here.  Both the Legal Times and the Washington Post articles point out that there are a variety of other issues in Sherrod that could prevent us from getting a definitive answer on whether the statute can be used in federal court, including whether the motion was timely made, whether it applies to conduct that pre-dated the statute’s effective date, or whether it can be immediately appealed (I’ve discussed all three issues here).   …

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Sherrod v. Breitbart Appeal Ready for Oral Argument

The Sherrod v. Brietbart appeal is now fully briefed (opening brief here, opposition brief here, and reply brief here) and ready for the oral argument, scheduled for March 15, 2013.  (The case has also attracted amicus briefs, including from the District of Columbia, the ACLU and Public Citizen, and a host of news organizations).  The threshold question in Sherrod is whether the denial of an anti-SLAPP motion is immediately appealable under the collateral order doctrine of Cohen v. Beneficial Loan Corp.  (The DC Court of Appeals recently held that it was not).  Under Cohen, the appellants must show that the …

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Can District of Columbia Use Anti-SLAPP Statute Against Defamation Suit?

According to the Washington Post, attorneys representing the District of Columbia, the DC Attorney General and DC Chief Financial Officer Natwar Gandhi have informed the DC Superior Court that they intend to file an anti-SLAPP motion in response to a defamation suit brought by Eric Payne, Gandhi’s former contracting director.  The complaint, filed July 30, 2012, alleges that, on June 11, 2012, Gandhi wrote in an email to a reporter that Payne was terminated because of his “poor performance.”  It alleges that this “false, derogatory and defamatory” statement was disseminated locally, domestically and internationally by various media outlets.  It alleges …

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3M Also Opposes Consolidation With Sherrod v. Breitbart Appeal

Today, 3M filed its opposition to the motion to consolidate filed by the Davis defendants in the 3M v. Boulter appeal. Yesterday, of course, Ms. Sherrod filed her opposition to that same motion, which sought to consolidate 3M v. Boulter with Sherrod v. Breitbart. Like the Sherrod opposition, 3M’s opposition argues that the two cases are not sufficiently similar to warrant consolidation. It also emphasizes, as did Ms. Sherrod’s opposition, that the 3M appeal involves the singular Erie issue, while the Sherrod appeal involves Erie, timeliness and retroactivity, so that the Sherrod appeal could be resolved on grounds that are inapplicable (and …

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Breitbart Defendants Assert Judge Leon’s “Statement of Reasons”; Shows Why Appeal Should Be Entertained By DC Circuit

Its been a busy month in the Sherrod v. Breitbart case. On February 6, the Circuit issued a per curiam order asking Judge Leon to explain why he denied an anti-SLAPP motion filed by the defendants. Judge Leon complied last week, issuing a “Statement of Reasons.” Today, the Breitbart defendants responded to that filing. 

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Sherrod Judge Issues “Statement of Reasons” Explaining Why He Denied Anti-SLAPP Motion

Judge Leon today issued a “Statement of Reasons” explaining why he denied an anti-SLAPP motion filed last year by the defendants in the Sherrod v. Breitbart lawsuit. The filing was in response to an order from the DC Circuit last week, which requested him to explain the basis for his minute order last year denying the anti-SLAPP motion. In the filing, Judge Leon explains that the motion was denied for three reasons. First, the lawsuit was filed six weeks before the statute became effective and there is no indication that it was intended to apply retroactively. The court accepts the …

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DC Circuit Requests Sherrod Judge To Explain Why He Denied Anti-SLAPP Motion

The DC Circuit today issued a per curiam order asking the judge who is presiding over the Sherrod v. Breitbart case, to explain why he denied an anti-SLAPP motion filed by the defendants. Last July, Judge Leon denied the motion in a minute order. Today, the DC Circuit ordered “on the court’s own motion, that the record be remanded to the district court for a statement of reasons for the denial of appellants’ motion to dismiss pursuant to the District of Columbia’s Anti-Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation statute, D.C. Code § 16-5502.” After the district court issues its statement of …

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