Legal Hotline: Help is a call away

Through the Legal Hotline, CPA members have access to competent, timely, free or low-cost advice from Hotline attorneys who have knowledge of laws affecting all phases of the media business.

CPA uses Ballard Spahr, which is recognized as one of the nation’s premier media and First Amendment law firms.

CPA members find the Hotline to be a cost-effective method of obtaining prompt and practical legal advice on a variety of issues.

The Hotline is under direct sponsorship and control of the CPA. The CPA collects the fees, promotes the service, decides who the attorneys should be and coordinates operation of the Hotline with the attorneys.

What free services are covered by the hotline?

• Freedom of Information issues, such as help with getting public records, are free up until the point of going to trial

• Pre-publication review for libel for weeklies and monthlies

• Other issues are not covered by the hotline, but Ballard Spahr does offer discounts to media companies

How to use the hotline?

• On FOI issues, members are first encouraged to contact the Colorado Freedom of Information Coalition. In many cases, the coalition can resolve the issue without attorneys getting involved. If not, it will help you get in touch with the attorney.

• On pre-publication review, contact attorney Steve Zansberg directly at 303-376-2409 or at

• On public notice issues, you are encouraged to contact CPA CEO Jill Farschman

• On all other issues, you can call the CPA office at 303-571-5117.

Why would we need to use the Hotline?

Your newspaper needs the Legal Hotline if you or anyone on your staff ever has had a question about legal issues, ranging from open records to libel to public notice to postal regulations. Hotline attorneys generally leave editorial decisions to your newspaper’s staff.

What if we already retain an attorney?

Hotline attorneys are available to participants’ local attorneys and will provide specific legal advice on media law issues. The same service is available to your attorney if your newspaper is part of a chain or group with a local or out-of-state general counsel.

Who can ask questions?

Any employee of a participating newspaper may contact the Hotline attorneys. It is up to the newspaper to decide which employees will be authorized to contact them. The attorneys are available to participants at all times to answer questions, either by phone or email. There is no limit to the number of consultations per year.

Can our newspaper afford to use the Hotline?

One call may repay your membership fee for the entire year.

Member Sign Up

If you’re a CPA member, you can create an account using the email address we have on file in our membership directory.

If we don’t have your email on file, contact the CPA office at 303-571-5117 or at