Counseling Individuals and Organizations in First Amendment Matters

Standing up for American freedoms of religion, free speech, and assembly

At Strassburger McKenna Gutnick & Gefsky, our attorneys defend and assert religious, speech, and assembly freedoms accorded to citizens and businesses, as well as free speech rights given to professional journalists, radio and television broadcasters, print media, and bloggers and other Internet content providers, including advertisers. We also defend municipalities, businesses, and other government organizations wrongly accused of infringing on those rights.

Navigating the First Amendment and related state laws

The attorneys at SMGG are familiar not only with U.S. Constitutional law, but First Amendment-related state laws in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and West Virginia, and are not intimidated when it comes to litigating issues involving:

  • Freedom of speech as it applies to pure speech, “speech plus” (accompanied by actions), symbolic speech, commercial speech, classified information, copyright violation, trade secrets, non-disclosure agreements, obscenity, pornography, sedition, hate speech, the right to read freely, freedom of association (the right to form a political party or a union), and the right to not be forced to join a union.
  • Freedom of the press, including limitations of the government’s right to prior restraint (censorship), state shield laws protecting reporter’s privilege (protection of confidential sources) and defamation, such as libel and slander.
  • Freedom of religious belief, prohibiting the government from establishing or preferring one religion over another, or interfering with a person’s practice of their religion, as it applies to prayer in public schools and other municipal organizations.
  • The right to assemble, as it relates to the freedom to associate with trade unions, political parties, or any other club or association such as fraternities and sport clubs.
  • The right to petition government for a redress of grievances, including the right to sue the government and the right of individuals, groups, and corporations to lobby the government.

Our attorneys also provide counsel and representation on issues that technically are not First Amendment but are covered by other Constitutional amendments, including an individual’s rights to privacy, anonymity, and refusal to self-incriminate.

The attorneys at SMGG have defended the rights of the media and its members in access, gag order, defamation, subpoena responses, and refusal to testify and contempt proceedings. But we also have successfully represented citizens, businesspeople, public officials, and other figures wronged by the media in privacy and defamation cases at both the district and appeals levels.

Look to SMGG for responsible First Amendment counsel and representation

Strassburger McKenna Gutnick & Gefsky knows Constitutional and state law relating to personal freedoms inside and out. To learn more about how we can help you, please contact Ronald D. Barber at rbarber@smgglaw.com to arrange for a consultation.