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Marsha411JD
Marsha411JD, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 19773
Experience:  Licensed Atty, 29 yrs exp in the practice of law.
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I've been having several issues with my leasing agent.

Customer Question

Hey
JA: Hi. What do you want help with?
Customer: I've been having several issues with my leasing agent. Finally I went online and wrote a bad review on them. The original review discussed issues regarding the contract not being fulfilled. They had their lawyer to send me a Cease and Desist letter saying that I must remove the post with all negative and false information I realize that the original post with the contract information they could get away with based on a technicality. Since then I've edited my post to speak about their lack of professionalism and poor customer service.
JA: Because laws vary from place to place, can you tell me what state the property is in?
Customer: Do I have to completely remove my review, and can I be sued?
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: Louisiana Not that I'm aware of. I was emailed the letter on yesterday from their lawyer
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: No nothing that I can think of. When do you think I can hear from someone?
Submitted: 23 days ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Marsha411JD replied 23 days ago.

Hello,

Thank you for the information and your question. No one but you can decide whether or not you leave your review online. However, the other party can file suit if they believe what you are saying is false and you know, or should know that it's false, and those statements have damaged their reputation. If you were sued, you would carry the burden of proving that the statements were true. If you are giving your honest personal opinion, then that usually is not defamatory. That said, you have to weigh what this is worth to you and whether or not you want to deal with the potential time and expense of defending a defamation lawsuit.

Please feel free to ask for clarification if needed. If none is needed, then if you could take a moment to leave a positive rating in the ratings box above, I will receive credit for assisting you today. Thank you

Customer: replied 23 days ago.
This is what the review now reads: "Most unprofessional staff ever. I spoke with the leasing agent Brittney McCarty several times, and she continuously proved to be very unprofessional, and speak in a condescending manner to me. She even refused to pay the company that referred me to the property a referral fee. I've never been so dissatisfied with any company, and experienced this lack of customer service and unprofessional."Being that the review is now edited based on my honest opinion of their company and services. Can I be sued for my opinion? Is it possible that they will instead seek to sue me for my original review although it had only been posted an hour or two?
Expert:  Marsha411JD replied 22 days ago.

Thank you for reply. I cannot give you a legal opinion on this because I am not your attorney, and cannot be since we cannot form an attorney-client relationship via this forum. In addition, I don't have all of the facts from all of the parties so it would be unethical for me to give you an opinion even if I could. Anyone can file suit though, so that is not an issue here. Whether they are successful rests on what I mentioned before. Any false statement of fact (which you have included facts in your write up along with opinions) can form a basis for a successful suit. Also as previously touched on, you have to weight the costs of defending a suit (time and money) with what you think you are getting out of posting anything at all. If it is worth it to you, then you have to be ready to defend a lawsuit whether it is ultimately successful for them or not. Remember, you carry the burden of proof to prove, by independent evidence each and everything you say happened.

Yes, they could file suit on either post, but they must prove damages. So, if a post wasn't up long enough to cause damages (for example loss of business), then they have no damages to sue for.

I will be away from my computer for the rest of the weekend, so if you have further follow up questions I will be more than happy to answer them when I return early Monday morning.

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