OneOC will honor a Manatt pro bono team led by class actions partner Adrianne Marshack at the 2018 Spirit of Volunteerism event for the team’s successful representation of a woman involved in a domestic violence defamation action. In addition to Marshack, the team includes partner Yuri Mikulka, associates Caleb Bean and Kristin Haule, and former associate Eric Chen.
The team is being honored for their work for a client who had moved to the United States from Pakistan for an arranged marriage to an American physician, who then abused her. When the client sought shelter and filed a domestic violence restraining order, her estranged husband then filed several claims against her, including one for slander.
When Manatt stepped in, the team helped successfully deflect the husband’s assertions on the grounds of free speech. After the husband tried to allege fraud and breach of contract, seeking to be repaid for the expenses he incurred to bring her to the United States, Manatt prevailed, pointing to California’s statute and policy that prohibit “heart balm” actions for failed promises of marriage and love. Following a full dismissal, Manatt successfully recovered attorneys’ fees under two separate orders, which were then donated to a nonprofit organization.
This is Marshack’s second consecutive year of being recognized at the Spirit of Volunteerism awards. OneOC is Orange County’s nonprofit resource center, and will present the awards at the Disneyland Hotel on April 26.