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Attorney & Mediator
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How difficult and expensive is it to sue for libel. I have

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How difficult and expensive is it to sue for libel. I have been insulted by an allegation in divorce court (not in a case about me) by a relative claiming I damaged property by placing computer virus' on a computer to which I have no access. The claim is made is direct motions to the court and are untrue. I am a PhD student in engineering and this will cause serious damage to my reputation and earning potential if it is not refuted and sealed.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Attorney & Mediator replied 5 years ago.
There are essential key elements you would need to meet before you can sue for defamation of character. These are:

Quoting:
  1. A false and defamatory statement concerning another;
  2. The unprivileged publication of the statement to a third party (that is, somebody other than the person defamed by the statement);
  3. If the defamatory matter is of public concern, fault amounting at least to negligence on the part of the publisher; and
  4. Damage to the plaintiff.

Again all elements are required before you can sue for defamation of character. Typically if damages have not been sustained, then there is no case. Damages would mean that your reputation has in fact been tarnished as a result of what was said or that you sustained adverse treatment as a result. Another thing is that you have to prove that false statements where made to be treated as factual statements. Statements of ones beliefs or opinions are defenses to shoot down a libel case.

It is a very difficult process to litigate and can cost way over $5000.00.




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Legal Disclaimer. The information given by me is not legal advice. I am not establishing an attorney-client relationship with you. I am providing only research, resources and information only for you to be informed and educated about your particular needs and my answer is limited to the facts presented. You are only paying me for such information given. No part of this disclaimer can be copied or reproduced without the express consent of the owner [lawNinvest]. Thank you.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
OK.

I have a statement made under oath and submitted to the court from the petitioner is a divorce case, it states directly that the respondent of the case and I conspired to infect business computers and to therefor damage the property/viabillity of the business.

1. This was made under oath and I have a written copy as submitted by the attorney. There is NO evidence as I did nothing of the sort.

I am finishing a PhD in engineering and have recently been granted a large sum of money to do further work as a Post Doctoral Fellow. The very nature of the grant process involves digging into litigation to see if the person to receive money (my current grant is in excess of 3 million dollars and I am applying for over 10 million more) is trustworthy. This type of statement made in open court can do nothing but harm my abillity to further my professional career.

2. The statement was made in a submission to a court judge and is therfor public domain. Does this meet your criterion of unprivaledged publication?

3. Im not sure i understand your third point... They have no evidence, and I can assure you that neither has the technical know how to even know IF it would be possible to prove (it is possible to DISPROVE easily).

4. See the statement above as it pertains directly to my abillity to further my career as a scientist working with public/private grant funds to continue my research.

Thank you and i look forward to your reply.
Expert:  Attorney & Mediator replied 5 years ago.
Thank you for your reply and additional information

Unprivilege publication means the intentional or negligent publication of false a false statement of fact intended to result in harm. The person who made the statement would be liable for the unprivileged publication, but someone like the court who makes it into public domain would have a conditional privilege (since they are merely placing on record what someone else has said). Hope this makes sense. So the person who made the statement would not have a privilege to make the statement since the initiated the false communication.

The third point was an attempt to clarify the defenses to a defamation cause of action which are: 1) truth, 2) statement of opinion or 3) statement of a belief.

One thing I need to point out is that in Kansas you can sue under a defamation per se which means that the statement was defamatory on its face even if you did not sustain any present damages. If the communication imputes allegations which will injury in your trade, business, or profession, you can sue without having to prove the last element of damages. So with the new info presented it would appear you have a case for defamation per se since the reference directly affects your profession and the person who made the statement has no privilege since they have intentionally or with negligence made a false statement.


Hope this helps.






_______________________________________________

Please Note: My answer or reply is limited to your facts presented and additional information you post may not come in after my reply or answer has posted, if this has occurred please let me know and I will answer further. Due to site tech reasons, oftentimes I am initially only able to see the first part of your post, so this may result in more interactions between us. There might also be a delay in my reply or answers, as I may be helping other customers, or called away from my office or have logged off. Please be assured your question(s) will be answered promptly.

Legal Disclaimer. The information given by me is not legal advice. I am not establishing an attorney-client relationship with you. I am providing only research, resources and information only for you to be informed and educated about your particular needs and my answer is limited to the facts presented. You are only paying me for such information given. No part of this disclaimer can be copied or reproduced without the express consent of the owner [lawNinvest]. Thank you.

Attorney & Mediator, Lawyer
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Satisfied Customers: 20012
Experience: Attorney & Certified Mediator
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