Stands for Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation. Lawsuit filed strategically by a corporation against a group or activist opposing certain action taken by the corporation, usually in the realm of an environmental protest. Typical claims underlying a SLAPP suit are libel, slander or restraint of business. Many states have adopted anti-SLAPP statutes in the interest of protecting free speech that provide for speedy hearings of the claims and the possibility of the defendant recovering legal fees and punitive damages.
Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary
A Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation, in which a corporation, business, or developer sues an organization in an attempt to scare it into dropping protests against its actions. SLAPP suits typically involve the environment -- for example, a developer might sue local residents, who are petitioning to change zoning laws to prevent a real estate development, for interference with the developer's business interests. Many states have "anti-SLAPP suit" statutes that protect citizens' rights to free speech and to petition the government.
Definition provided by Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary.
August 19, 2010, 5:24 pm