In February, our very own Lara Hollingsworth presented oral argument before the Supreme Court of Texas on behalf of our client, real estate investor Armando Montelongo, owner of Real Estate Training International LLC, Performance Advantage Group Inc., and License Branding LLC. In her argument, Lara examined the legislative intent behind Texas’s Anti-SLAPP statute, advocating for the adoption of a bright line rule to clarify a defendant’s ability to file a motion to dismiss under the Texas Citizens Participation Act (TCPA).
Montelongo was originally sued for negligent misrepresentation by a group of former students. But the plaintiffs later amended their petition to assert a fraud claim. Lara argued that when the original petition was amended, the 60-day deadline to dismiss the action should have restarted. Lara argued that that the deadline needed to reset with the addition of a new legal theory. “I think it is consistent with the Legislature’s intent to avoid gamesmanship, to avoid a litigant creatively pleading around the statute.”
Read the coverage from Law360 on the matter here. The previously recorded livestream of this virtual argument can be seen below.