Settlement Of Termination
After a long legal battle between Fox and longtime ‘Simpsons’ Composer Alf Clausen, his 2017 termination is officially over. Both the parties have reached a decision and secured dismissal in two courts even though Clausen does not seem happy.
Reason Behind Termination
‘Simpsons’ Composer Clausen sued Fox in 2019, alleging that he had been fired because of his age. Clausen has worked for three decades on this series and now he is 80. As a composer, he has won two Emmys and was nominated for more than a dozen others.
Later on, Clausen includes in his complaint that the company has failed to accommodate disabilities stemming from Parkinson’s disease. Also, he was sooner terminated after the disclosure of his disease.
Actions Taken By Fox
Fox has filed an anti-SLAPP motion in 2020, arguing that the decision made to fire Clausen was not simply because of his disease. In the termination reason, it was also included that producers learned that Clausen was outsourcing his works to others. Clausen acknowledged this argument as “lies and deceit.”
The anti-SLAPP statute of California allows a defendant in actions to end the frivolous litigation arising from protected conduct, specifically in furtherance of its right of petition or free speech in connection with a public issue. Also, the courts allow that a defendant is entitled to recover related attorneys’ fees and costs. (within limited exception)
Clausen’s claims of failure to engage, accommodate, retaliation, and unfair business practices were not subject to California’s anti-SLAPP laws, so he could proceed with those.
According to Stern, the other claims made by Clause were identified as anti-SLAPP and assessed whether Clausen had a reasonable probability of prevailing. Clausen’s claim of age discrimination made Stern think that the composer had a good chance of success in his disability discrimination claim, Fox appealed.