The 3 Elements of Proving a Defamation Lawsuits

Whether you are a victim of libel or slander, there are three particular truths that must exist in order to be successful with a defamation lawsuit. Continue reading to learn what your legal team must be able to prove for you to win your case.

Personal Injury Attorney Law Firm 317-881-2700
Personal Injury Attorney Law Firm 317-881-2700

Defamation and Freedom of Speech

Defamation laws are in place to protect our reputations from false and injurious statements made by other people or entities. So, if a person or entity (such as business) is guilty of any type of defamation, whether slander, libel, or a combination of both, they can face serious legal consequences in civil court. Although one might argue our 1st Amendment rights, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech,”  if there is clear and concise evidence that a statement damaged a another’s reputation, and therefore, caused them to suffer damages and losses, a court will likely side with the victim.

Difference Between Libelous and Slanderous Statements

According to the American Restatement of Torts, a statement can be considered defamatory if, “it tends so to harm the reputation of another as to lower them in the estimation of the community or to deter third persons from associating with him.” Slander is the spoken form of defamation, while libel is the written and published form of defamation.

For instance, defaming a person or business on a radio broadcast would be considered slander, while publishing a blog online with defamatory statements about a person or business would be considered libel. Read our blog, “The Legal Concepts Surrounding Libel, Slander, and Defamation of Character” to learn more information about the differences between these two types of defamation.

Elements to Win a Defamation Case

As a victim of defamation, your hired legal team would hold the burden of proving that the defendant was guilty of libel or slander. In order to do so, your personal injury lawyers would need to demonstrate that 3 specific elements exist:

The defendant made an untrue and defamatory remark regarding the plaintiff.

The defendant made the remark to a 3rd party, knowing (or should have known) that the remark was false.

The publisher demonstrated negligence by publishing the defamatory remarks.

Keep in mind that in some cases, the plaintiff legal team must also prove certain special damages in addition to the elements listed above. It is important to retain experienced personal injury representation if you or your business have been significantly affected by defamatory statements made by another.

Speak to a Trusted Defamation Attorney in Indiana

Call Craven, Hoover, and Blazek P.C. at 317-881-2700 to speak with a licensed Indiana personal injury lawyer about your recent defamation experience. Attorneys Daniel Craven, Ralph Hoover, and Keith Blazek are well-versed and experienced in insurance compensation law, and offer free initial consultations to discuss your case and determine the best strategies for your claim. We never collect lawyer fees unless we obtain a settlement or judgment for you. Get started today by calling 317-881-2700 and scheduling your free consultation.

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The Legal Concepts Surrounding Libel, Slander, and Defamation of Character

Defamation Lawyer 317-881-2700

Defamation Lawyers 317-881-2700

When someone’s words, whether written or spoken, causes harm to another person’s reputation or source of revenue, it is a civil wrong referred to as defamation. This area of the law provides relief for those victimized by defamatory statements, which can be recovered with the help of a personal injury lawyer. There are infinite examples of how a person can defame another person, but all defamation of character examples will fall under one of two categories, or sometimes even both.

The categories of defamation are libel and slander. Continue reading to learn the difference between libel and slander, and what you need to prove to win a defamation of character injury lawsuit.


Libel is a term used to describe written defamatory statements. With the innovative advancements in communication and technology, there are many ways a person can commit this civil wrongdoing in today’s society. It is possible for a person to write something derogatory or defamatory about someone else in letters, email, blog posts, social media posts, chatrooms, online forums, books, magazine publications, newspapers, flyers, posters, comments to online posts, and much more. And anyone who does make libelous statements about another person can be sued for defamation of character. An example of libel would be writing a rumor-based blog post about someone, accusing them of illegal misconduct that was untrue.


Personal Injury Lawyers Indiana 317-881-2700

Personal Injury Lawyers Indiana 317-881-2700

In contrast to libel, slander refers to spoken defamatory statements. Verbalized defamatory statements to any third party other than the verbalizer and the victim are considered slander. Because it is so easy to talk, slander can be easily committed. And if victims can prove that a person’s slanderous statements caused their reputation or source of income harm, they can recover remedies under civil law.

For instance, if a professional athlete’s ex-manager spreads false rumors of him using illegal supplements among his group of teammates and coaches, and as a result he loses certain endorsements and forced to go through an investigation in the public eye, it would be considered slanderous.

Proving Defamation

Having an opinion is not defamation. A person can “qualify” their statements by saying, “I think” or “In my opinion”, thus protecting them from accusations of defamation. For instance, if a student writes a comment on a blog post about a teacher at their school saying, “I think Mrs. Rogers is having an affair with the Vice Principle”, this would not be considered defamatory. A defamatory statement must be a statement of fact. So in this same example, the student’s statement would be defamatory if it said, “Mrs. Rogers is having an affair with the Vice Principle.” It is important to hire an experienced Indianapolis personal injury lawyer if you believe you or someone you love has been victimized by defamation of character wrongdoings. They have the knowledge, experience, and determination to recover the full and fair relief you deserve as a victim of slander or libel.

Indianapolis Personal Injury Attorneys

Personal Injury Attorney Indianapolis

Personal Injury Attorneys 317-881-2700

Call Craven, Hoover, and Blazek P.C. at 317-881-2700 to file a defamation of character claim in Indianapolis, Indiana. Our seasoned personal injury lawyers, Daniel Craven, Ralph Hoover, and Keith Blazek stop at nothing to ensure your family finds relief after suffering damages from slander or libel. We offer free initial consultations, so there is absolutely no out-of-pocket obligation to discuss your incident and options. And we never collect attorney fees unless we prevail for you! Call 317-881-2700 to set up your free consultation, and speak with Indianapolis
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