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LegalKnowledge, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 27198
Experience:  10+ years handling Legal, Real Estate, Criminal Law, Family Law, Traffic matters.
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I just was in a parents meeting and I'm a coach. I was

Customer Question

I just was in a parents meeting and I'm a coach. I was accused of not handling a situation properly and parents made nasty comments I should be fired and shouldn't have a job. I handled it the same way I did a prior accurance before. Both principal and athletic director were present. Can I fight them for defamation.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  LegalKnowledge replied 1 year ago.

Good morning. I certainly understand the situation and your concern. Under Pennsylvanian law, a private figure defamation plaintiff must prove that the defendant either willingly made a false statement of fact or was at least negligent in determining that their statement was true. Now, you shared that they accused you of not handling a situation properly, so it would need to be determined what was supposed to have been done and if you did and they were intentionally and negligently making this accusation. Moreover, since this was in a meeting, they do have a right to comment and speak about the incident. It is not as if they are going on the news or social media cites saying things which are harming you. In addition, you want to show damages. If this is a dispute between how you handled something and how they wanted you to do it, that is different then them coming out and making a false claim which damages you and your reputation and ability to work, when they knew it was false.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
My question is. I had 2 girls a couple months do threatening Facebook messages to one another but the school had me just talked to them and that situation was done. This time I had an incident where one sent a video that was same line not as bad it terminology to a couple of girls in a group message. One decided to forward it on but not the child that made it. Situation was handled in same manor by talking to girls and it was fine but they are saying it is cyberbulling and I didn't handle it properly but the other situation was handled through the school as well and never was accused of cyberbulling. What is your thoughts on this
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
it never was Sent to one it was about by the one who made it.
Expert:  LegalKnowledge replied 1 year ago.

Why was this incident not handled through the school and who reported this? How come you were involved and not someone from the administration? Once you were informed of this, did you report it to the school?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
it was reported through school however it did not happen on school time so there is a line there. I addressed them all about it because they were friends and were fine after talking to them. So when talking with school They were in same area with me of handling it the same but instead I got verbally attack from parent. The parent wanted a meeting with me and principal and athletic director.
Expert:  LegalKnowledge replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for the additional information. Their complaint and concern that this was " not properly handled", would not amount to a basis for a defamation case. They can request a meeting and share their concerns with the school and staff but it would not likely rise to the level of a civil lawsuit that would allow you to recover.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
What do you mean by would allow you to recover?
Expert:  LegalKnowledge replied 1 year ago.

In order to prevail in a defamation lawsuit you need to meet the requirements and show damages. While they are complaining and not happy with how this was handled (which is their opinion) it does not rise to the level of a lawsuit

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Okay Thanks.
Expert:  LegalKnowledge replied 1 year ago.

You are welcome. Please let me know if there is anything else. If not please remember to rate my help at the top do the site gives me credit for our time together.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I know for future obviously social media is huge with minors. Is it considered cyberbulling if something is sent about a person in private messages to a friend but not sent to the person it's about. But then the friend that gets it decides to foward it on. It was posted to a media wall of the person it was about for public to see so is it considered cyberbulling. Technically definition is repeadletly harassing or posting for public to see. And cyberbulling is forwarding something of someone without their knowledge of it so if something was Sent privatly amongst friends and a friend forwarded its technically cyberbulling against the friend that sent it privately,
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It was not posted to a media wall for anyone to see is what I meant
Expert:  LegalKnowledge replied 1 year ago.

If it was sent privately and the victim was not directly contacted or harassed by the sender and they sent it to someone else, it may be hard to classify it as cyber bullying. If they went after the victim continuously, it would e a different situation. In the future, you want to address this and report it through the school and let the admin handle it. Report it and follow procedure and only get involved, as much as the school allows and asks, to avoid parent from coming after you. Please let me know if you have any follow up questions or need any clarification on something which I stated above. Also, remember to rate my service at the top of this page, before exiting the site, so I can receive credit for my help. I hope you found it to be Excellent! Only rate my answer when you are 100% satisfied. If you feel the need to click either of the two lower ratings to the left, please stop and reply to me. I want to make sure your experience with the site was as pleasurable as possible and that you are satisfied with the help I provided.