Libel and Slander

Understanding Libel and Slander

If you have been the victim of libel or slander in San Diego, Los Angeles or throughout Southern California, you may be entitled to money damages and an injunction. At my law firm, Jaques Law Office in Vista, California, we can help. We represent people in civil claims for slander or libel and for associated claims such as trade libel, intrusion, and false light. Schedule a confidential consultation with us today so we can begin fighting for your rights.

Slander involves communication by spoken words. Slander can occur in various media, including radio and TV and by general word of mouth. It exposes you or your business to hate, contempt or ridicule, or causes others to stay away from you or business.

Libel consists of the publication of defamatory matter by written or printed words. Businesses and individuals with strong libel cases often have false statements made against them, expressing false facts about them leading to hate, contempt, ridicule, and being shunned, in publications such as newsletters, magazines, books, newspapers and – increasingly – on the Internet. Any statement on the Internet would be libelous.

Both slander and libel are complex matters. Many experienced lawyers who mean well do not recognize key elements and nuances of defamation – so it is best to seek immediate guidance (you may have only a few months or even weeks to respond to defamation) from an experienced attorney who can review the evidence and tell you what you’re up against. Sometimes, it can be difficult to tell whether you have a claim for slander or libel. For example, a prepared manuscript that is read aloud is generally held to be libel rather than slander.

Accused of Slander or Libel? Defending Yourself Against A Defamation Lawsuit

Generally, defamation – whether it is slander or libel – is a false statement of fact that is harmful to someone’s reputation and “published” to another person, typically as a result of negligence or malice. State laws, such as California’s Civil Code, often define defamation in specific ways.

Accordingly, to defend yourself against a defamation lawsuit, you must prove that one of the following occurred:

  • The statement was actually true.
  • The communication was a matter of opinion as opposed to a statement of fact.
  • Other mitigating circumstances, such as someone else making the statement.
  • In certain cases, that the statement did not cause any actual harm.

While we prepare every case for trial, the truth is that most claims settle before the trial date. Thorough trial preparation is the key to favorable settlement. If we handle your case, we will prepare it thoroughly and effectively for trial, reviewing all the evidence and building a strong case.

Contact a San Diego Lawyer for Assistance Throughout Southern California

We provide personalized attention from the moment we take your case until the best possible results are achieved. We strive to be accessible to our clients and are easy to reach by phone. If you need to leave a message, we aim to return your call within two hours. Call us at 760-295-1311 or confidential consultation.