Aronson v. Dog Eat Dog Films, Inc.

Filing 39

DECLARATION of Thomas B. Vertetis filed by Plaintiff Ken Aronson re 38 MOTION for Reconsideration re 33 Order on Motion for Reconsideration (Vertetis, Thomas)

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 DECL OF TBV ISO PLFF'S OPP RE: FEES - 1 of 2 NO. 3:10-CV-05293-KLS THE HONORABLE KAREN L. STROMBOM UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF WASHINGTON AT TACOMA KEN ARONSON, Plaintiff, v. DOG EAT DOG FILMS, INC., Defendant. NO. 3:10-CV-05293-KLS DECLARATION OF THOMAS B. VERTETIS IN SUPPORT OF PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION OF ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION NOTE FOR MOTION CALENDAR: OCTOBER 8, 2010 ORAL ARGUMENT REQUESTED I, Thomas B. Vertetis, declare and state as follows: 1. I am a partner with Pfau Cochran Vertetis Kosnoff PLLC, I am over the age of 18, I am one of the attorneys for the Plaintiffs in this case, I am competent to testify to the facts of this case, and I make the following declaration based upon my own personal knowledge. PFAU COCHRAN VERTETIS KOSNOFF PLLC 701 Fifth Avenue, #4730 Seattle, WA 98104 PHONE: (206) 462-4334 FACSIMILE: (206) 623-3624 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 2. Attached as Exhibit 1 is a true and correct copy of the Declaration of Service showing service of the enclosed letter and draft complaint on the defendant's talent agent. 3. Attached as Exhibit 2 is a true and correct copy of the Declaration of Service showing service of the summons and complaint on the defendant. 4. Attached as Exhibit 3 is a true and correct copy of a letter from Johnson to Vertetis, dated May 18, 2010. Based on Mr. Johnson's representation that he was getting married and would be out of the country and unavailable to work on this case, I stipulated to his request for a continuance to file the defendant's answer and any motions related to the complaint. I relied on Mr. Johnson's representation and would not have stipulated to a continuance if I knew that Mr. Johnson intended to continue working on this case during the time he said he was unavailable and if I know that Mr. Johnson was going to use the continuance to ensure the defendant's motion to strike was filed after the Anti-SLAPP legislation became effective. 5. Attached as Exhibit 4 is a true and correct copy of Final Bill Report, SSB 6395, which reflects the Anti-SLAPP Act did not become effective until June 10, 2010. I declare under penalty of perjury under the laws of the United States of America, 28 U.S.C. ถ 1746, that the foregoing is true and correct. Dated this 8th day of October 2010 in Tacoma, Washington. PFAU COCHRAN VERTETIS KOSNOFF PLLC By _________________________________________ Thomas B. Vertetis, WSBA No. 29805 DECL OF TBV ISO PLFF'S OPP RE: FEES - 2 of 2 NO. 3:10-CV-05293-KLS PFAU COCHRAN VERTETIS KOSNOFF PLLC 701 Fifth Avenue, #4730 Seattle, WA 98104 PHONE: (206) 462-4334 FACSIMILE: (206) 623-3624 EXHIBIT 1 EXHIBIT 2 EXHIBIT 3 EXHIBIT 4 FINAL BILL REPORT SSB 6395 C 118 L 10 Synopsis as Enacted Brief Description: Addressing lawsuits aimed at chilling the valid exercise of the constitutional rights of speech and petition. Sponsors: Senate Committee on Judiciary (originally sponsored by Senators Kline, Kauffman and Kohl-Welles). Senate Committee on Judiciary House Committee on Judiciary Background: Strategic lawsuits against public participation, or SLAPPs, are initiated to intimidate or retaliate against people who speak out about a matter of public concern. Typically, a person who institutes a SLAPP suit claims damages for defamation or interference with a business relationship resulting from a communication made by a person or group to the government or a self-regulatory organization that has been delegated authority by the government. A 2003 Gonzaga law review article describes most SLAPPs as occurring in the commercial context with the lawsuits being filed against people or groups alleging environmental or consumer protection violations. In 1989 the Legislature addressed the use of SLAPPs by creating immunity from civil liability for people who in good faith communicate a complaint or information to an agency of the federal, state, or local government or to a self-regulatory organization that has been delegated authority by a government agency. In 2002 the anti-SLAPP statutes were amended to remove the requirement that the communication be in good faith and to allow statutory damages of $10,000 to a person who prevails against a lawsuit based on a communication to a government agency or organization. The 2002 legislation also included a policy statement recognizing the constitutional threat of SLAPP litigation. Summary: The Legislature asserts that it is in the public interest for citizens to participate in matters of public concern and provide information to public entities and other citizens on public issues that affect them without fear of reprisal through abuse of the judicial process. The Legislature affirms its concern regarding lawsuits brought primarily to chill freedom of speech and petition, also known as strategic lawsuits against public participation. An action involving public participation and petition is defined as including any oral or written statement submitted in connection with an issue under consideration by a legislative, executive, judicial, or other proceeding authorized by law. It also includes any oral or ญญญญญญญญญญญญญญญญญญญญญญ This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent. Senate Bill Report -1SSB 6395 written statement that is reasonably likely to encourage or enlist public participation in the consideration or review of an issue in a legislative, executive, judicial, or other proceeding authorized by law. Any oral or written statement submitted in a public forum in connection with an issue of public concern is also an action involving public participation and petition. Any other lawful conduct in furtherance of the exercise of the constitutional right of free speech in connection with an issue of public concern is also considered to be an act involving public participation and petition. A procedure is created for the speedy resolution of strategic lawsuits against public participation. The court is directed to hold a hearing with all due speed on any motion to deny a claim based on an action involving public participation and petition and to render its decision no later than seven days after the hearing is held. A person who is successful in pursuing a motion to deny a claim based on an action involving public participation and petition is awarded costs of litigation, reasonable attorneys' fees, and $10,000. The court may award additional relief such as sanctions upon the moving party and its attorneys if it determines they are necessary to deter repetition of the conduct. If the court finds the motion to deny a claim is frivolous or is intended to cause unnecessary delay, it will award costs of litigation, reasonable attorneys' fees, and an amount of $10,000. The general purpose of the law to protect participants in public controversies from an abusive use of the courts is to be applied and construed liberally. Votes on Final Passage: Senate House 46 96 0 0 Effective: June 10, 2010 Senate Bill Report -2- SSB 6395