Media and First Amendment
We are experts on First Amendment guarantees of free speech, press and expression. We have litigated free speech cases in the United States Supreme Court, and we have taught the First Amendment at the law school, graduate and undergraduate levels at several universities.
There are a few areas where freedom of speech is tested most frequently. For example, defamation claims (libel & slander) directly challenge speech. We have met those challenges, and prevailed. We also know how to defend against copyright infringement claims, where frequently the alleged infringement is really a fair use.
We know the law of advertising and commercial speech, and we have defeated attempts to stop speech before it occurs, known as prior restraints. In order to protect our clients, we also offer pre-publication and pre-broadcast counseling to leading news producers to minimize the chance that speech will lead to a lawsuit.
Lawsuits in California regarding freedom of speech and petition often involve the anti-SLAPP statute, a special procedural framework designed to protect speech and petition rights. We have litigated over 50 anti-SLAPP cases.