SLAPPED for Speaking Out?

Reprinted with permission from the September 2010 edition of the Law Journal Newsletters. © 2010 ALM Media Properties, LLC.

In recent years, disputes between parties with differing views on issues of public concern have spilled into the court system with increasing frequency. The term “SLAPP” (or “Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation”) was coined to refer to lawsuits brought against private individuals or organizations who, through speech, petition or other expressive conduct, seek to influence the actions or decisions of a public official or body.