Defamation of Character Damages

Defamation of character is one of the most widely discussed types of civil litigation. But despite its frequent appearance in the news, particularly when it involves celebrities, defamation of character is also widely misunderstood.

For example, many people may not know that defamation of character is actually a form of personal injury, and thus often appears as part of a personal injury lawsuit.

In addition, defamation of character damages are usually not available if the allegedly defaming remarks are true. Damages in a defamation of character lawsuit can involve actual and punitive damage fees.

Defamation of Character Basics

Defamation usually involves false claims, either written or spoken, about an individual that harms that person’s reputation. Written defamation is known as libel, while defamation in spoken form is called slander.

In order for a defamation of character claim to have merit, plaintiffs must usually prove:

  • Public false statement. The alleged defamer must have made a public statement about the plaintiff that was untrue.
  • Causal link. The statement must clearly relate to the plaintiff, and not someone else.
  • Harm. The plaintiff must also usually prove that he or she suffered some sort of harm as a result of the defamation. Harm may include decreased reputation, economic losses, or other forms of non-physical injury.

In addition, celebrities and public figures have a higher threshold for obtaining defamation of character damages. They must also prove that the alleged defamer acted with actual malice.

Types of Damages for Defamation of Character

If a plaintiff successfully proves slander or libel, then he or she may be eligible for defamation of character damages. Damages in this type of personal injury settlement may include:

  • Actual damages. These help plaintiffs obtain relief for the harm they suffered. Actual damages may compensate victims for economic losses, emotion suffering, or harmed reputation.
  • Punitive damages. In extreme cases, a court may issue punitive damages in order to punish the defamer.

Defamation of character cases rely on slippery, ever-changing areas of law. Personal injury laws also vary from state to state.

To connect with a local injury lawyer for a free consultation about your defamation claim, simply fill out the brief form below:

Copyright © 2011 TotalInjury, LLC. (as licensee). All rights reserved.

Submit ZIP Code
Or, call us anytime. Available 24/7: 855-694-9176

Some bumps and bruises are a natural part of life. But when your pain is caused by reckless behavior, abusive behavior or negligent practices, Total Injury is there.

If you were injured as a result of someone’s negligence or intentional actions against you, you may have the right to compensation for any injury, damage or loss caused by the person at fault. About Us »

Attorneys: We help clients find you! Call 877-349-1307

PAID ATTORNEY ADVERTISEMENT. THIS WEB SITE IS A GROUP ADVERTISEMENT AND THE PARTICIPATING ATTORNEYS ARE INCLUDED BECAUSE THEY PAY AN ADVERTISING FEE. It is not a lawyer referral service or prepaid legal services plan. Total Injury is not a law firm. Your request for contact will be forwarded to the local lawyer who has paid to advertise in the ZIP code you provide. Total Injury does not endorse or recommend any lawyer or law firm who participates in the network nor does it analyze a person's legal situation when determining which participating lawyers receive a person's inquiry. It does not make any representation and has not made any judgment as to the qualifications, expertise or credentials of any participating lawyer. The information contained herein is not legal advice. No representation is made that the quality of the legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers. Any information you submit to Total Injury does not create an attorney-client relationship and may not be protected by attorney-client privilege. Do not use the form to submit confidential, time-sensitive, or privileged information. All photos are of models and do not depict clients. All case evaluations are performed by participating attorneys. An attorney responsible for the content of this Site is Kevin W. Chern, Esq., licensed in Illinois with offices at 25 East Washington, Suite 400, Chicago, Illinois 60602. To see the attorney in your area who is responsible for this advertisement, please click here.

FLORIDA ONLY: Total Injury is considered a lawyer referral service in the state of Florida under the Florida Rules of Professional Conduct. By all other standards, Total Injury is a group advertisement and not a lawyer referral service.

If you live in Mississippi, Missouri, New York or Wyoming, please click here for additional information.