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Barrister
Barrister, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 33794
Experience:  15 yrs practice, Civil, Criminal, Domestic, Realtor, Landlord 26 yrs
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What constitutes slander?

Customer Question

What constitutes slander?
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Barrister replied 4 months ago.

Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I am a licensed attorney who will try my very best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can. There may be a slight delay in my responses as I research statutes or ordinances and type out an answer or reply, but rest assured, I am working on your question.

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If the comments a person is making by talking about you are untrue and are harming your reputation, you may have an action for slander and defamation. Defamation is considered any intentional false communication, either written or spoken, that harms a person's reputation; decreases the respect, regard, or confidence in which a person is held; or induces disparaging, hostile, or disagreeable opinions or feelings against a person.

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For a cause of action for slander/defamation you would have to prove damages and the following elements:

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a defamatory statement;

published to third parties; and

which the speaker or publisher knew or should have known was false.

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Additionally, if the person is engaging in this type behavior simply to annoy and disturb you, you could file criminal and civil charges for harassment.

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The Modern Penal Code section 250.4(MPC) defines harassment as a petty misdemeanor if with purpose is to harass another, he: 1) makes a phone call without a legitimate purpose; or 2) insults, taunts or challenges another in a manner likely to provoke violent or disorderly response; or 3) calls at inconvenient hours or in offensive language; or 4) subjects another to offensive touching; or 5) engages in any other course of alarming conduct serving no legitimate purpose of the actor.

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Under the United States Code Title 18 Subsection 1514(c)1. Harassment is defined as "a course of conduct directed at a specific person that causes substantial emotional distress in such a person and serves no legitimate purpose".

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Put simply, anything that people do for no good reason or lawful reason or purpose and they know it distresses you is harassment.

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You could file a civil harassment suit against the person and be awarded monetary damages and injunctive action if you can show proof s/he is harassing you with their actions. A judge would likely issue a restraining order against the person for no communications to be directed towards you.

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thanks

Barrister

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