Laura Handman

Attorney, First Amendment expert

Laura R. Handman divides her time between the New York and Washington, D.C. offices of Davis Wright Tremaine LLP. For more than 35 years, she has provided counseling and litigation services to U.S. and foreign publishers and broadcasters in content-related matters. She has recently obtained dismissal of libel suits brought by an inventor of software that supposedly read coded messages on Al-Jazeera telling Al-Qaeda where to attack next, a prisoner who killed two U.S. Marshals, a casino magnate who sued a reporter in Hong Kong for calling him “foul-mouthed”, a Liberian war lord, a former Russian diplomat who forms offshore shell companies, an author challenging Obama’s birth certificate, an anti-gay rock singer, the “Number One Dirtiest Hotel in the U.S.,” and two New York judges. She got Six Degrees of Separation held protected satire rejecting a claim by the person whose story inspired the play. On behalf of the Washington Post, she got unsealed search warrants in the investigation of D.C.’s former Mayor. She has represented reporters alleged to have received classified information in two recent Espionage Act prosecutions. This summer she successfully opposed Murray Energy’s effort to compel disclosure of confidential sources. She argued for the first application of the First Amendment to questions to and responses from Amazon’s Alexa in response to a search warrant in a murder case. She was the first to get U.S. courts to refuse to enforce British libel judgments as “repugnant” to the First Amendment.

October 19, 2017
Protecting Sources & Subjects in a (Newly) Hostile Environment
National Union Building
10:30 am  -  11:45 am
October 21, 2017
Pro Bono Legal Clinic for Visual Storytellers
The Loft at 600 F
9:30 am  -  12:30 pm