Character Assassination: When Defamation Becomes a Personal Injury Law Issue

December 12, 2022by LegalASAP

Personal injury isn’t always physical—attacking one’s character can be just as bad if not worse than a physical injury. When someone is falsely accused or labeled as something they’re not, the repercussions the victim faces can threaten their ability to earn a living and function normally in society. That can have detrimental effects on their professional and personal lives. This post will define what defamation is, when it can be considered a personal injury issue as per defamation law, and how a personal injury attorney can help victims fight back. 

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Defining defamation 

Defamation refers to tarnishing another person’s character and reputation by making a false statement under malicious intent. For legal understanding, it’s important to know that defamation can be subdivided into two categories:

  • Libel—written defamatory statements via email, newspaper, or website post.
  • Slander—oral defamatory statements with no permanent record, such as gestures, body language, or spoken statement via radio, television, or podcast.

Defamation of character—be it libel or slander—becomes a personal injury issue. More so, anyone who utters the false statement, forwards it, or otherwise spreads can be a potential defendant in your lawsuit. And under defamation law, the sufferer can seek protection and restitution against the damages, such as harm to reputation, public humiliation, mental and emotional issues, such as depression and anxiety, and lost wages, or a loss of ability to earn a living. 

Calculating damages caused by defamation 

Filing a defamation lawsuit can be challenging. For you to be eligible for compensation, it’s necessary to furnish the evidence of a malicious statement, that the statement was untrue, and that you suffered physical or financial damages as an immediate result. Also, must be aware of types of damages you can claim:

  • Actual damages: loss of wages, property, or earning capacity
  • Assumed damages: an assumption of losses based on the harm inflicted on the victim’s reputation or character
  • Punitive damages: damages the victim can receive if it’s determined the defendant acted maliciously or fraudulently 

Speaking to a personal injury lawyer

Reading or hearing false statements harming your character can be disappointing and humiliating. Worse, the reputational harm can cause you long-term financial and emotional challenges. If you’ve  been the victim of libel or slander defamation, speak to an expert personal injury attorney. Here’s how experienced legal representation can help you build your case and guide you through all the legal formalities:

  • prove you’re falsely accused;
  • calculate the type of damages you suffered;
  • arrange for witnesses who can testify to the slanderous remark;
  • help you receive as much compensation as possible;
  • clarify different statutes of limitations across states.

You may have a case for defamation of character if you’ve suffered a quantifiable loss due to malicious statements made by someone. By connecting you with the best lawyers for personal injury, we can help you establish solid proof and maximize your chances of claim success. Contact LegalASAP today and take our free personal injury evaluation to see if you qualify and get the legal help you need.

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