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Libel v. Slander


Newspapers, television or radio stations or individuals that publish something untrue about a private citizen can be held liable for libel. Similarly, someone who says something untrue about another can be held liable for slander. The main difference between libel and slander is that libelous information is printed or broadcast, while slanderous information is spoken. Libel and slander are considered forms of “defamation” because of they have a potential to injure a person’s reputation. However, it is important to note that media and news organizations are afforded strong constitutional protections.


Defamation and the Media


The media enjoy rights of free speech guaranteed by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Therefore, a newspaper that publishes an editorial opinion, or someone else’s opinion, cannot be held liable for defaming you. In fact, nobody can be held liable for making a statement that the court deems to be an opinion. Truth is also a defense to defamation. The allegedly defamatory statements do not even need to be entirely accurate, as Courts often consider the “gist” of the statement.¬†Defamation cases can be difficult to prove, and a skilled personal injury Attorney is indispensable.


Defamation Damages


Damages can be anything from hurting someone’s reputation in his or her trade or profession, to causing that person mental anguish and humiliation. Recovery for damages can take two basic forms: money damages, or an “injunction” (a judicial order). An injunction means that the publication can be ordered to be retracted, and you can obtain a Court order prohibiting future publication.


If you feel that your reputation has been injured as a result of defamation in Ohio, call Toledo Defamation Attorney Dennis E. Sawan today at 1-866-INJURY-0 or 419-900-0955.

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