SEPT. 22, 2023 – A tech litigation team from Davis Wright Tremaine LLP has been named "Litigators of the Week" by American Lawyer's Lit Daily, after prevailing on a motion to preliminarily enjoin the California Age Appropriate Design Code Act.
The team of Ambika Kumar, David Gossett, and Adam Sieff won a decision from Judge Beth Labson Freeman finding that the first-of-its-kind Act, which was enacted unanimously by the state Senate and signed by the governor a year ago, likely violates the First Amendment.
Davis Wright represented the national technology industry trade group NetChoice in the case.
"The law would have transformed the internet by coercing virtually all online services into censoring vast amounts of content—including content appropriate for adults," Kumar told Lit Daily.
While acknowledging that the underlying goals of the challenged law were important, Judge Freeman found that "the provisions of the [law] intended to achieve that purpose do not pass constitutional muster."
"Legislatures in many states are pushing for similar laws," Gossett told Lit Daily. "But it’s not enough to just do something, it's critical to do the hard work of getting regulation right."
Said Sieff: "This was ultimately a case about principle, and specifically the way our democratic system commands us to solve important social questions. Managing the integration of new communications technologies into a free society has never been easy. But that is the task the Constitution assigns us as a free and democratic people: to solve problems without sacrificing the discursive liberties essential to self-government."
The successful cross-office litigation team was led by partners Kumar (Seattle) and Gossett (Washington, D.C.), with counsel Sieff (Los Angeles) as chief lieutenant. Also contributing to the win were associates Meenakshi Krishnan (D.C.) and Shontee Pant (Seattle), counsel Abigail Everdell (New York), and partner Eric Feder (D.C.).
About Davis Wright Tremaine
Davis Wright Tremaine LLP is an AmLaw 100 law firm with more than 600 lawyers representing clients based throughout the United States and around the world. The firm represents many of the world's leading technology companies and is widely recognized as the preeminent First Amendment litigation firm in the country. For more information visit www.dwt.com.