Michele L. Earl-Hubbard - Allied Law Group

Michele L. Earl-Hubbard

Listed in Best Lawyers since 2007

San Francisco State UniversityNorthwestern University School of LawJ.D. 1996
Society of Professional JournalistsWashington Coalition for Open GovernmentNational Freedom of Information Coalition

Case History

Alaska Structures v. Hedlund, Div. 1 Court of Appeals, Washington State — Successfully defended and had dismissed as a SLAPP lawsuit a breach of contract claim against a former emplyee related to posts criticizing the company on an Internet jobs forum.  On appeal to the Division One Court of Appeals.
O'Neill v. Shoreline — Prosecuted a Public Records Act lawsuit related to access to metadata in an email before the trial court, Court of Appeals, state Supreme Court and on remand the trial court.  Achieved an award of $100,000 in penalties and more than $430,000 in fees and costs.  Landmark decision from the Washington State Supreme Court declaring metadata of a public record to itselff be a public record.  Fee and cost award on appeal to the Division One Court of Appeals.
Freedom Foundation v. Governor Gregoire — Washington State Supreme Court challenge to Governor's claim to executive privilege to avoid producing records under the Public Records Act.  Awaiting decision.
State v. Richardson, Washington State Supreme Court — Represented journalist in seeking to unseal criminal court records and a secret docket of a public official/legislative candidate/licensed school teacher related to a sex offense against a child.  Motion to unseal in trial court was denied and was taken as a direct appeal by the Washington State Supreme Court.  Supreme Court remanded for trial court to apply state law rewuirements and unseal the records and docket.  Remand proceedings to occur in the fall.
JZK Inc v. Coverdale — Successfully quashed and narrowed subpoenas to organizaiton and employee whose partial function was investigating and reporting on an online publication. Relief was based on state Reporter's Shield Law and federal common law journalist's privilege.
Dang v. Ehredt, Division One Court of Appeals — Represented bank and bank teller in obtaining dismissalm of lawsuit by bank customer stemming from report to police.  Was first occassion for the state appellate court to evaluate the scope of the state's law immunizing those who make reports to the government for all claims "based on the communication".  Lawsuit raised non-communication claims, but we successfully established a right to the immunity when the original act was the call to police.
Berger v. Hanlon and CNN, US Supreme Court — Defended CNN in a 4th Amendment civil rights challenge by a rancher served with a search warrant where CNN was allowed to ride along with federal agents during their search.  A dissappointing result by the U.S. Supreme Court finding law enforcement officers cannot bring the media with them during a search on private poroperty without vioalting the 4th Amendment, that the media could be deemed a joint co-conspirator with the government and subject to the same 4th Amendment liability, and that the media's independent watchdog function did not justify allowing media presence,

Client Comments

"Michele L. Earl-Hubbard is the epitome of a great lawyer. She not only understands the issues and applicable statutes and case law, she also communicates to the client her personal commitment to the case. I would recommend her to any author or freelance journalist seeking advice."

-Patrick Dunleavy

"Michele Earl-Hubbard has vast, extensive experience. She brought us a victory in a difficult case where others had failed."

-Roger Hurlbert
Sage Information Services

"Michele L. Earl-Hubbard is simply outstanding in her knowledge and defense of Media and First Amendment issues."

-John Brewer
Peninsula Daily News

"Michele Earl-Hubbard did an outstanding job of helping us with our open public meetings violation case and I have gladly referred her to other individuals and groups struggling to hold elected officials and staff accountable for their disclosing of legally required materials and information."

"Michele Earl-Hubbard is a first-rate communications/media/First Amendment adviser and litigator."

-David Zeeck
president, publisher
Tacoma News Tribune

"Michele L. Earl-Hubbard is approachable and a clear communicator."

-Roger Hurlbert
Sage Information Services

"Earl-Hubbard helped us to navigate a tricky problem from 2,000 miles away, and got the right outcome against a much larger and well-heeled adversary."

-Paul Courant
Univ. of Mich.

Office Location

6351 Seaview Avenue, NW
P.O. Box 33744
Seattle, WA 98133
United States

Lawyer of the Year Awards

2017 Lawyer of the Year in First Amendment Law of the Seattle Metro Area2014 Lawyer of the Year in First Amendment Law of the Seattle Metro Area
Michele L. Earl-Hubbard has earned a Lawyer of the Year award for 2017!Michele L. Earl-Hubbard has earned a Lawyer of the Year award for 2014!

Practice Areas

First Amendment Law
Litigation - First Amendment
Media Law

Other Information

Gender: Female