Lawrence G. Walters
Lawrence G. Walters heads up the Walters Law Group, an ‘AV’ rated (preeminent) law firm concentrating in Internet law, intellectual property, gaming, and First Amendment issues. Mr. Walters has developed a passion for protecting civil liberties – in particular, online speech and expression. He has devoted over 30 years to defending constitutional rights and protecting free expression. Mr. Walters is an accomplished civil rights advocate, a widely-published author, and a well-known public speaker. His client reviews and peer endorsements can be found here. He frequently represents the online entertainment community along with other more traditional industries. Larry is often consulted as a national expert on legal issues pertaining to freedom of speech and the Internet. He regularly contributes to television news programs on networks such as NBC, ABC, PBS, BBC, CBC, FNC, MSNBC, CNBC, and CNN. His high profile cases are often followed by the print and online media, having been covered in such publications as the Chicago Tribune, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Wired Magazine, ABA Journal, Orlando Sentinel, etc. A partial listing of his articles and publications can be found here.
Mr. Walters began practicing law in Central Florida in 1988, after graduating from Florida State University, College of Law, with Honors. While in law school, he studied English common law at St. Edmunds Hall Oxford University, and interned with a federal judge in the Northern District of Florida. During his career, Mr. Walters has served as a Legal Studies professor at the University of Central Florida and acted as a director for the local bar association and chamber of commerce. Among his many civic and community activities, he has served as Chair of the Legal Panel of the ACLU, Central Chapter, and is a founding member of the Advisory Council for U.C.F. Legal Studies Department. Larry also acts as General Counsel to the Woodhull Freedom Foundation, based in Washington, DC, and serves on the Advisory Council to the Association of Sites Advocating Child Protection. He has established and directed numerous non-profit associations and trade groups. His efforts in helping fight online child exploitation earned him the Annual Service Recognition Award from the ASACP. Mr. Walters has been recognized as one of the Top 100 News Makers by the media industry group, Xbiz, and was included in the top 10% in the ‘Best of the Bar’ competition, through a poll conducted by the Orlando Business Journal. He was recently recognized as Media IP Lawyer of the Year, and won First Amendment Lawyer of the Year in 2018 and 2019.
Mr. Walters’ First Amendment law practice dates to the late ’80s when he defended numerous small video stores in Florida against a government censorship campaign. In 1997, he formed the Florida Bar’s First Amendment Law Committee, which he chaired for over a decade. He represents hundreds of website operators across the globe in connection with complex Internet law issues. Mr. Walters regularly deals with issues relating to online advertising, Internet gaming, free speech concerns, DMCA Safe Harbor, Section 2257 compliance, domain name disputes, mobile applications, blockchain operations, and other cutting-edge practice areas. Larry often finds himself embroiled in precedent-setting cases in the fields of online gaming, adult entertainment, social networking, and advertising law. Many of his legal victories have been the result of pro bono representation.
In addition to practicing law, Larry has developed various software devices to assist the online entertainment community with legal compliance, including the patented BirthDateVerifier, along with and mobile applications such as Quick2257 to help with federal records keeping requirements, and QuickDMCA, to simplify online copyright enforcement.
Mr. Walters is a frequent lecturer on free speech issues, and has presented seminars across the country on Internet law, gaming law and the First Amendment. One of his speeches dealing with the First Amendment and Terrorism, was published in the Representative American Speeches of 2003, along with those of former President George W. Bush, Dr. Condoleezza Rice, and Sen. Hillary Clinton. He regularly publishes articles of interest to webmasters on countless websites and magazines, including legal updates directed at specific industries. Larry has also created the Web Law Network, a collection of resource websites providing legal information on a variety of Internet law fields. Over the years, Mr. Walters has published numerous law review articles on free speech issues and gaming law, along with a book chapter on the First Amendment protection of commercial speech.
In 2005, Mr. Walters was appointed to the Board of Officers of the First Amendment Lawyers Association, a prominent, nationwide group of First Amendment practitioners, where he served as the group’s National Chairman and past President. He has earned an “AV” (preeminent) rating from lawyers.com, the industry-standard rating service for lawyers, and “10.0 – Superb” by AVVO.com, a popular online attorney rating service. Mr. Walters is admitted to practice in all state and federal courts in Florida, along with the United States Supreme Court, the Ninth, Eleventh, and D.C. Circuit Courts of Appeals, and the U.S. Claims Court. In addition, he has been admitted pro hac vice to courts across the country. In 2016 he received his certification as a foreign trained lawyer from the Federation of Law Societies of Canada, after rigorous testing.