3 Things To Know Before You Sue For Defamation

Posted on: 4 June 2015

If you recently went through a difficult break-up and are suffering from defamation caused by your ex, you may be able to sue him or her in a personal injury lawsuit. To win a case like this, you will need to have solid proof and evidence that what your ex has done (or is doing) is to hurt you, your reputation, and your life. Before you talk to a personal injury lawyer about your situation, here are three things you should know.

What Is Defamation?

Suing for defamation means someone has said or written things that have harmed your reputation. When the words were spoken, it is considered slander. When it is written, it is called libel. To sue for defamation, you must be able to prove the things spoken or written were not true.

For example, if your ex is telling people you are a horrible money manager and are severely in debt, this information could be damaging to your reputation. The trouble with this is if these statements are true, you cannot sue. You could only sue for defamation if you can prove these statements are false.

The other important element to be aware of is you must also be able to prove the statements were injurious. This means you must be able to produce evidence illustrating the defamation caused injuries to you. These injuries do not refer to physical injuries (although they could), but typically injurious refers to damages caused to your reputation.

For example, if you work as an accountant and your employer heard or read these derogatory statements, you could prove injuries if you had been fired from your job because of this. This will take proving you were fired because of the things your ex said, and this can be another difficult aspect in a defamation case.

What Types Of Damages Can You Sue For?

In addition to suing for injuries, you may also be able to sue for non-economic damages, which can include:

  • Depression
  • Fear
  • Anxiety
  • Loneliness
  • Humiliation
  • Grief
  • Isolation

If you are experiencing any of these feelings, you may have lost the happiness and satisfaction you once felt in life. In reality, your life would have been just fine if your ex had not done this to you. All of these feelings fall under the category of mental anguish, and if you can prove the defamation you might be able to sue for all of these things.

What Types of Evidence Can Help You Win?

If you still believe you have a case with the situation you are in, you will need to start gathering evidence that supports your claim. With the right evidence, you will have an easier time winning the case. Here are some types of evidence that may help you through this lawsuit:

  • Copies of things written – If your ex posted negative things on social media, print out the copies. If the statements were sent through email, print them. Print out whatever you can showing the statements your ex has said.
  • Get witnesses – Proving slander is harder because the words were spoken, but you could prove this by gathering witnesses. If people approached you with this information, ask them if they would be willing to go through a deposition to record their testimonies.
  • Phone logs – There are also times when defamation crosses the line into harassment. For example, if your ex continuously called you at work and wouldn't leave you alone, print copies of the logs showing the phone calls.
  • Therapy evaluations – If you visited any type of therapist for help through this, the therapist could write a letter backing up your claim.

While going through a lawsuit is never fast, fun, or easy, it might be the only way to stop your ex from doing these things. To learn more about defamation cases, contact a personal injury attorney by phone or by checking out sites like http://www.sarklawfirm.com/.