Court of Appeal Protects Investigator During Litigation

Bessie Gallanis-Politis sued her employer, LA County, for discrimination. During the litigation, a couple of supervisors investigated certain issues, purportedly to help prepare the discovery responses. They also took a number of other, incidental, actions, including requiring Gallanis-Politis to change her attendance records to "unapproved absence" when she attended depositions. She amended her complaint, suing the individual supervisors for retaliation. The Court of Appeal held that the supervisors' conduct arose from the litigation and were protected by California's anti-SLAPP law. In other words, the court said that Gallanis-Politis retaliated against the supervisors in violation of the statute. This case protects employees from employee-plaintiffs who attempt to sue managers involved in the defense of the case, and employee-plaintiffs who attempt to shield themselves from neutral policies during litigation. The case is Gallanis-Politis v. Medina, and the opinion is here.