Legal Hotline

LEGAL HOTLINE: (717) 703-3080

One of PNA’s most popular services to our members is the free Legal Hotline. PNA members may contact the hotline with legal questions about laws that impact journalists and the publishing industry as well as for quotes, background information, pre-publication review and for litigation-related resources.

PNA attorneys routinely provide members with advice on the Right to Know Law and other public records laws, the Sunshine Act, libel and invasion of privacy, court access issues, First Amendment, copyright and trademark, independent contractors, the Pennsylvania Shield Law, publication of notices, and advertising issues to name a few. In addition, many reporters from PNA member news organizations also rely on PNA’s attorneys for quotes in stories involving media law issues. PNA attorneys also routinely provide pre-publication review of advertising as well as editorial and news content.

PNA also participates as amicus curiae (friend of court) in litigation involving PNA members and in cases that impact the media industry. We also maintain a robust list of attorneys, law firms and clinics with media law expertise for referrals. The Legal Hotline can address requests for amicus participation, referrals, and other litigation-related resources.

You can reach the PNA Legal Hotline at (717) 703-3080 or

Access the Legal Hotline Archive

Legal Hotline: Political Ads – State and Local Elections

Q: What are some of the issues we need to consider when reviewing political advertising? A: Financing, required disclosures, timing, rates and defamation issues arise in the context of political advertising, and…

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Legal Hotline: Election Code – Access to Candidate Information

Q: The county election office is removing political candidates’ addresses from election records like nominating petitions before they release them to us. We use this information for numerous purposes, including verifying residency…

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Legal Hotline: Clery Act

Q: There are several colleges and universities in our circulation area, and there have been several crimes reported on and near campus. We requested access to information about the crimes from campus…

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Legal Hotline: Sunshine Act Agenda Requirements

Q: The Sunshine Act requires agencies to provide agendas in advance of public meetings, but some local agencies are providing agendas that list generic or all-encompassing subjects that have little meaning. Can…

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Legal Hotline: Employment Ads – Basic Rules

Q: Can you give us a refresher on the general rules that govern employment ads? A: Under the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act (PHRA) and a number of federal laws, it is unlawful…

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