First Appellate District Court reverses judgment in favor of Softsol Technologies in fraud case

By Mary Ann Magnell | Sep 19, 2018

SAN FRANCISCO – A California appeals court reversed and remanded the Alameda County Superior Court’s judgment on Sept. 11 “with instructions to enter an order sustaining the demurrer with leave to amend” in a first cause of action over fraud allegations against defendant and respondent Softsol Technologies Inc.

Additionally, the First Appellate District, 3rd Division sustained without leave to amend plaintiff Syed Nazim Ali‘s second through sixth counts for breach of oral contract and violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act and/or Fair Employment and Housing Act against the defendant. Further, the court sustained with leave to amend the seventh cause of action for intentional interference with prospective economic advantage.

Although “his pleading and his appellate briefs are deficient in numerous respects,” said appeals court Judge Stuart R. Pollak, he concluded that “Ali should have been granted leave to amend his misrepresentation and interference with prospective advantage causes of action."

“While hardly a model pleading, we conclude that the second amended complaint, read as a whole, alleges sufficient facts to indicate that Ali may have a meritorious misrepresentation cause of action, even if the court might properly have sustained a demurrer for uncertainty to require expansion or clarification of certain elements of the claim,” the ruling states.

The lawsuit arose from a written contract between Softsol and Cybersecurity Associates Inc., of which Ali is a sole shareholder. According to the filing, Softsol had recruited Cybersecurity to provide software engineering services for the State Compensation Insurance Fund (SCIF).  

Ali, according to the filing, only accepts assignments of at least one year’s duration. He alleged that Softsol made “false statements inducing him to enter on behalf of Cybersecurity an assignment with SCIF that lasted only three months, and to turn down offers for other longer assignments,” according to the ruling.

According to the ruling, Ali claimed that Softsol failed to accommodate a medical condition and retaliated against him, allegedly ignoring his concerns. Ali was terminated, according to the ruling, “on Dec. 8, while he was home sick.” 

Ali filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and received a right-to-sue letter.

California Court of Appeals First Appellate District, Division Three number A153336

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