Obtaining Legal Help from the SPLC
The Student Press Law Center's legal staff provides free information to student journalists, their
advisers and others working on their behalf. Help is available on almost any media law matter of concern to
the student press (censorship, libel law, copyright law, freedom of information law, are a few examples).
While the Center does not represent individual clients, we can often make referrals to media law attorneys
in your area willing to provide free assistance when legal representation is necessary. All requests to the
SPLC for legal assistance or information are confidential.
Unfortunately, we cannot provide information to individuals not connected to the student media, but we
can help point you to other sources of legal help. Students working on school
research projects are directed to the Homework Zone.
Choose one of the three ways described below to request assistance from the SPLC
- SPLC Virtual Lawyer
Take me to the Virtual Lawyer
The Student Press Law Center legal staff has been helping student media since 1974, and the answers
to most of your legal questions can usually be found on our Web site.
Always on call, our Virtual Lawyer stands ready to conduct a short, online interview that can help
direct you to the information you need when you need it.
- For urgent help or if you feel you need to speak to someone directly, you should
call the Student Press Law Center's hotline at our Arlington, Va., office during our normal
business hours, 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. (EST), Monday - Friday. (Note: From Memorial Day through Labor Day, our offices close at 4:30 p.m. on Fridays)
Student Press Law Center Legal Hotline (703) 807-1904
- Non-urgent requests or questions can be made by e-mail or regular mail. Because
the SPLC responds to over 2,000 requests for legal help and information each year, an
individual written response to questions is not always possible. Because of this, please always
include a telephone number and address in your post or letter. Questions left by e-mail are usually
responded to within one to five business days.
Student Press Law Center
To ask a legal question by e-mail
Complete the secure SPLC Legal Help Form
To ask a legal question by regular mail:
(include your telephone number and return address)
1101 Wilson Blvd.
Arlington, VA 22209-2275
(Note: Documents sent to the SPLC cannot be returned.)