How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask LawTalk Your Own Question
LawTalk
LawTalk, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 37855
Experience:  I am a practicing attorney with more than 3 decades of experience in the legal field.
15277592
Type Your Legal Question Here...
LawTalk is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My daughter fostered a dog rescue. She was told the dog was

Customer Question

My daughter fostered a dog for a rescue. She was told the dog was good with other animals. When she took the dog out for a walk, before she even got out of the yard, the dog, a young pit bull spied a small kitten hiding in the bushes and lunged at it. It shook the kitten violently and she could not get him to release his grip without having to pummel him herself, the dog then became a threat to her and her friend as well as the kitten. She immediately left a message with the rescue, but felt because of the volatility of the situation she needed police assistance. Police arrived and called the rescue and because the rescue was so uncooperative, they took the dog to animal control. In the meantime, my daughter took the kitten to an emergency vet where he was diagnosed with grave injuries although he is coming around now. She racked up a large bill which of course makes us responsible for the cat now. She is in high school and it would be a stretch for her to pay what is due. She reached out to the rescue and was given the runaround, then they wouldn't return messages. We ended up putting up a gofundme page to try to get the money to pay the vet. We indeed named the rescue, told how we were told he was other animal friendly and that the dog was still on their site showing as adoptable when in truth he is at animal control and likely will be euthanized. The owner told us she was going to sue us for naming them even though everything we said was factual. She insists it is erroneous. We have proof of her telling my daughter the dog was so so with cats, however this is not something she would have asked since we don't have cats indoors. The kitten wasn't even ours, he was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. Opinion?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  LawTalk replied 1 year ago.
Good afternoon Nadine,I'm Doug, and I'm very sorry to hear of your situation. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today. In a defamation case, the truth is always a defense to the civil claim. So long as you just told the truth about what the rescue told you, then there is no defamation and no case. I suspect the threat to sue you was just that and nothing more---an idle threat. In order to win a defamation case, the other party must prove the following:A false statement was made about an individual, or entity---in this case the rescue operator;The statement was made to a third party;If the defamatory matter is of public concern, (for example if you are a famous person) fault amounting at least to negligence on the part of the publisher.Finally, you must show that you have suffered damages.Based on what you have shared, what you passed on to the public was the truth and not a false statement and as such the rescue operator has no valid claim against you. You may reply back to me using the Reply link and I will be happy to continue to assist you until I am able to address your concerns, to your satisfaction.I hope that I have been able to fully answer your question. As I am not an employee of JustAnswer, please be so kind as to rate my service to you. That is the only way I am compensated for assisting you. Thank you in advance.I wish you and yours the best in 2016,Doug
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I spoke to the operator this morning who said her board voted against assisting us with paying the vet because of what we posted on gofundme. I find that to be vindictive and not in the best interests of the animals involved. Would that be slanderous or libelous to put that on the gofundme page as well? I want it to show our efforts to work with them and how we have been treated in return.
Expert:  LawTalk replied 1 year ago.
Hi Nadine, You wrote: I find that to be vindictive and not in the best interests of the animals involved. I do as well. However, the rescue operator is not legally liable for the vet bills. Under the law when your daughter took possession of the dog she became liable for the control of the dog under CA law. Would that be slanderous or libelous to put that on the gofundme page as well? It is the truth---so placing the reason that the rescue operator will not contribute to the vet bills would not constitute defamation. You may reply back to me using the Reply link and I will be happy to continue to assist you until I am able to address your concerns, to your satisfaction.Please remember to rate my service to you so that I can be compensated for helping you. Thank you in advance.I wish you and yours the best in 2016,Doug
Expert:  LawTalk replied 1 year ago.
Good afternoon,Do you have any additional questions that you would like me to address for you?In case you would like a phone call to further discuss these issues you have raised, I will make that offer to you. You are certainly not obligated to accept a call offer, but many people do find it helpful for clarification purposes, as well as to allow them to ask additional questions.As I have provided you with the information you asked for, would you please now rate my service to you so I can be compensated for assisting you?Thanks in advance,Doug