Kansas
Subgrades  
Covered Speech: A-
Anti-SLAPP Procedures: A+
Subscores  
Covered Speech: 90 out of 100 points
Anti-SLAPP Procedures: 100 out of 100 points
Detailed Scoring on Anti-SLAPP Procedures  
Suspension of Court Proceedings Upon an Anti-SLAPP Motion: 20 of 20 points
Burden of Proof on Plaintiff to Defeat an Anti-SLAPP Motion: 12 of 12 points
Right to an Immediate Appeal: 25 of 25 points
Award of Costs and Attorney Fees: 40 of 40 points
Expansive Statutory Interpretation Instruction to Courts: 3 of 3 points

State Anti-SLAPP Statute

Kansas’s anti-SLAPP statute,[1] the Public Speech Protection Act, protects the right of free speech, the right of petition, and the right of association. (However, the statute carves out several content-related exemptions from the broad principles stated above, such as those related to selling or leasing goods and services.) Although discovery, motions, and pending hearings are stayed once an anti-SLAPP motion is filed, a court may nonetheless order specified and limited discovery, motions, and pending hearings to be conducted upon its own motion or if good cause is shown. The anti-SLAPP movant bears the initial burden of making a prima facie case that the actions at issue in the claim are protected by the anti-SLAPP statute; the anti-SLAPP respondent must then establish the likelihood of prevailing on the claim by presenting substantial competent evidence to support a prima facie case that the actions at issue in the claim are not protected by the anti-SLAPP statute. If the court denies an anti-SLAPP motion, the movant has the right to file an interlocutory appeal. If the court fails to rule on the anti-SLAPP motion in an expedited fashion, the movant has the right to petition for a writ of mandamus. A court must award costs and attorney fees to the prevailing movant on an anti-SLAPP motion, as well as additional relief that will deter similar conduct by others. Conversely, if the court finds that the motion is frivolous or solely intended to delay, it must award costs and attorney fees to the respondent that are related to the motion. In general, the anti-SLAPP statute instructs courts that interpret its language to do so “liberally” – an instruction presumably designed to foil readings of the statute in a cramped or narrow way that would exclude marginal cases.

[1] Kan. Stat. Ann § 60-5320.

Dan Greenberg & David Keating

https://www.ifs.org/author/dgreenburg/

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