Nicollette Sheridan claims she was fired for complaining that the show’s creator, Marc Cherry, slapped her on the head during rehearsals for a scene in September 2008.
The 48-year-old actress featured in five seasons of the ABC series, before her character Edie Britt was written out of it a few months after the slapping incident.
On Tuesday, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Elizabeth Allen White dismissed the battery allegation, leaving only the wrongful termination allegation against Touchstone Television Productions, which makes the show.
Closing arguments in the case, which opened on March 1, could come as soon as today.
Sheridan filed the lawsuit in April 2010 against Cherry and Touchstone Television Productions, alleging both battery and wrongful termination of employment.
Cherry’s lawyers claim he had already decided to drop her character in May 2008, four months before the incident — but Sheridan says she was assured in 2007 that her character would continue for the duration of the show.
“Desperate Housewives,” about lust, gossip, and foul play in a pampered American suburb, is to take its final bow at the end of its current eighth season.
The show, watched by 12 million people last season — less than half the first season peak — helped turn around ABC’s flagging fortunes and boosted the international market for US series with complex plots and one-hour episodes.