Personal injury has a great range when it comes to what qualifies. Personal injury can be anything from falling on a dangerous playground, falling on a wet floor, and even defamation of character. Yep, you heard that right. Personal injury isn’t always a physical injury; rather, it’s an injury of any kind to character or the physical body. So, if you’re dealing with a scenario where what’s being said about you is false, and also causing harm— you might be eligible for a defamation of character lawsuit. But what does this type of lawsuit cover? And how do I prove that the statements made are causing harm?
Defamation of Character as Personal Injury: Proving that Slander is Harmful
How does defamation work?
Essentially, for a statement(s) to be defamation, it must be 1) false, and 2) resulting in harm of some kind. Typically, the type of ‘harm’ associated with slander, is that of harm to the reputation. But, how do you put a number on what your reputation is worth? And what ‘damages’ need to be recovered?
Consider if a celebrity, say a powerful and affluent male celebrity, is facing an accusation of rape. The presumed victim(s) give a detailed account, goes to the media, and in turn, the celebrity loses every single contract he has— along with a pending TV series. However, two months later— we find out that the ‘victim’ has given a false account of what happened. The actor is no longer in trouble with the law. However, that bit of false information will likely have a long-lasting, and damaging, effect on his career. He’s losing roles, endorsements, a fanbase, and a lot of money. In this case, a defamation suit can arise.
On what grounds?
There are a few different consequences that you can use to prove your suit. For one, you can claim financial consequences. Take that scenario from above; the actor was and is losing business opportunities. Therefore, they can seek repayment for lost wages. You can also seek repayment for your expenses due to hiring a lawyer, and ‘repairing reputation’. Other than claiming financial problems, you can also claim mental damages. Anything from developing anxiety, depression, insomnia, or the like.
Ultimately, you have to be able to prove that you suffered in some form or fashion. But, that’s where a good attorney comes in. So, if you think you have a strong case for this type of lawsuit— reach out for help today! No one should have to suffer at the hands of false information.