26 December 2005

States Ban SLAPPs

An increasing number of states are passing laws to discourage "strategic lawsuits against public participation", i.e. civil suits which often would lose on the merits designed to silence a company or organization's critics. California and Arkansas are among them and apparently "two dozen state legislatures have passed laws that restrict the filing of such suits or make it easier for people to fight back." The California Anti-Slap Project has a nice list of the states that have anti-SLAPP statutes.

Colorado does not have such a law, and the latest effort was apparently sponsored by Representative Bill Sinclair (a Republican with a libertarian streak) of Colorado Springs in 2002. But, its courts have usually been protective of speech restrictions veiled as private lawsuits.

Hat Tip to How Appealing.

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