Internet Defamation Lawyers
Do you need an Internet defamation lawyer? Good. You’ve landed in the right place.
Thanks to the rise of the Internet, the number of online libel lawsuits has skyrocketed.
Gripe and review websites are a thorn in the side of many businesses; individuals are not being hired because of defamatory online content.
A ruined rep is just a tweet or nasty blog comment away – which means it’s important to legally address any and all libelous statements ASAP. The longer words fester, the more damage they can do.
Hiring a knowledgeable Internet defamation lawyer — with considerable offline defamation litigation experience — is the first step in fighting back.
Free Speech v. Defamation
Free speech is an important aspect of United States defamation law. In many cases, individuals are unfairly asked to remove material that qualifies as free speech, fair comment or a genuine matter of public interest.
In those instances, the best way to defend yourself against defamation claims is to find a firm with both defamation prosecution and defense experience – like us.
What Is Defamation?
If someone is spreading lies, a defamation lawsuit may be the only way to shut them down.
In legal terms, defamation is the communication of any statement known to be false and harmful. Defamation can affect a business, an individual, a product, a group, a government or even a nation.
Libel v. Slander
There are two types of defamation. Libel is the publication of false statements, intended to harm, via words or images. The statement must be directed towards someone other than the person being defamed. Slander is the verbal version of defamation. A malicious and false statement made by one person regarding another person is slanderous. Slanderous statements are known to be untrue and are spoken to inflict harm on the subject.
Civil Penalties For Defamation
To dissuade defamation, most jurisdictions permit legal actions for slander and libel. Civil actions are more common than criminal prosecutions (only a handful of states still have criminal libel statutes). The key factor in a defamation lawsuit is that the statement, whether published or spoken, must be known by the publisher or speaker to be false. One defense against defamation is truth (via the use of other civil torts, some plaintiffs do win even if the statement in question is true). Another common defense is that no harm was done.
What Factors Must Exist To Win An Internet Defamation Lawsuit?
For plaintiffs to prevail in Internet defamation lawsuits they must:
- show that the defendant knew the statement was false;
- prove that they were harmed by the statement;
- demonstrate that the defendant did not check to verify the truthfulness of their assertion.
Different Standards For Public Figures & Private Individuals In Internet Defamation Lawsuits
Celebrities and public figures must meet a higher level of proof to win defamation lawsuits. Simply stated, the “known” among us must meet the standard of “actual malice,” meaning they must prove the statement was false, caused harm and was done with a high degree of intent.
Can Deceased People Be Defamed?
In most cases, only the living can be defamed. However, ten states have laws prohibiting defamation of the dead (Georgia, Louisiana, Nevada, Colorado, Kansas, Idaho, Oklahoma, Utah, North Dakota and Washington).
Contact An Internet Defamation Attorney
If you feel you’ve been defamed, contact us to discuss your situation. Kelly Warner has considerable experience litigating Internet defamation cases. We know the laws and how to overcome your slander and libel challenges quickly.