Anti-SLAPP Laws

Published: 26th June 2015
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When you are enforcing your civil judgment, often you begin with sending your debtor a polite letter. One might mention a payment plan or discount, when the debtor pays your judgment quickly. When the judgment got assigned to you, or you're a lawyer or a collections company; you would probably want to let your debtor know you're going to be the one to now send a payment to, to pay off your judgment.

What if your debtor later responds by threatening some court lawsuit, or even worse, you get served with a legal notice of a civil lawsuit; asserting that you did something wrong by writing them a demand letter, or taking a legal tactic to try to enforce your judgment?

My articles are my opinions and are not, legal advice. I am a judgment expert, and not an attorney. When you want a strategy to use or legal advice, please contact a lawyer.

Any one can start to sue anybody else for any reasons, even not any valid reason. If you do your best to always fulfill all commitments, follow all laws, handle everyone well, do not rip off anyone, and remain very often cheerful, honest, helpful, and fair; you are a lot less likely to get sued. If you are served with a lawsuit for doing nothing incorrectly, find a lawyer who knows anti-SLAPP law, which can usually stop most frivolous civil lawsuits.

After you have a judgment, enforcing it is considered a regular and normal course of action. My nonlegal opinion is one's constitutional right to attempt to get your judgment satisfied is not restrained just because somebody thinks you're interfering with the debtor's legal rights, properly enforcing a civil judgment against the debtor. In every state, it's perfectly legal to try to legally recover your judgment. In the majority of courts, unjust lawsuits can usually be dismissed.

SLAPP most often is an abbreviation for Strategic Litigation against Public Participation. Sometimes, SLAPP is short for slightly different names. The majority of states have their own SLAPP laws, for when folks are sued for their words or actions protected by their first amendment rights. The laws are intended to thwart intimidation or censorship.

Anti-SLAPP laws were a reaction to those "clever" people who thought they could easily shut someone down or badger them by suing them. State legislatures eventually stepped up to the plate and soon passed new laws, in a somewhat unusual situation of some new laws moving in a good right direction.

Anti-SLAPP defenses are a unique type of redress (a special motion to strike) some meritless SLAPP-related civil lawsuit. It inhibits those that attempt to harass other people with lawsuits without merit; designed to drain their unfortunate victim's assets, and strong arm them into complying with their unjust demands. In some circumstances, a defendant may sue their plaintiff in a malicious prosecution lawsuit.

The average SLAPP motion is not some complaint, it's a special court motion (demurrer) to strike the plaintiff's complaint. A defendant presents their SLAPP motion in response, instead of replying to a plaintiff's complaint. The person sued asserts that the lawsuit is (for example) without merit, without any actual causes of action, and designed solely to harass them, or to prevent the defendant from being able to exercise the legal rights they have.

SLAPP motions are used in "so what" situations when somebody sues you (as an example) for expressing your opinion, doing your job properly, or perhaps parking your car in your own parking space. If there isn't any valid "causes of action", you might be allowed to submit a anti-SLAPP motion.

Often, once a SLAPP lawyer contacts the plaintiff's attorney, the attorney dismisses their lawsuit, as they are aware that their side will be liable for the SLAPP attorney's costs.

For example, when you get served with a lawsuit for sending a polite and discrete letter (following all FDCPA and state laws) informing the judgment debtor, of your need to eventually be paid and the debtor's suggested options; that is probably an example of protected speech. Prior to the court's time limit, you or an attorney can probably file an anti-SLAPP motion, which will accomplish 3 things:

1) Halts their lawsuit at the stage it's nowat.

2) Prior to the lawsuit progressing further, the plaintiff has the burden of fully proving the defendant's communication and speech was not protected.

3) If your court later decides the person who was sued's speech was legally protected, then the defendant gets all of their attorney fees and court costs paid by the plaintiff's side.

The majority of states have anti-SLAPP laws. Within California, there's Codes of Civil Procedure 425.18, 425.17, 425.16, and SB 320 California Anti-Libel Tourism Act. Great sites for more SLAPP info are and


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