Defamation of Character Statute of Limitations

Defamation Demand Letters Defamation of Character Statute of Limitations

Defamation of Character Statute of Limitations

In the event that someone makes false and damaging comments about you, this is considered Defamation and is a severe offense. There are two types of defamation: “libel,” which refers to a statement that is written or put on the internet, and “slander,” which relates to a remark that is uttered. Defamation cases must be proven by showing that the libel or slander was published in some manner and that the subject’s reputation, future employment prospects, or even physical or mental health were harmed as a consequence.

Many people have taken the step of filing a “cease and desist” letter in response to this crime, in which they warn the person making the false allegations to halt before any further legal action is taken. Learn more about defamation and how to interpret the laws regarding the Statute of Limitations by reading the sections below.

Understanding the Stipulations of Defamation

Slander vs. Libel

As previously stated, the two aspects of defamation are slander and libel: 


  1. Libel is also distinguished by the fact that it leaves a lasting record, such as an email, radio or television broadcast, newspaper article, or internet posting.
  2. Slander does not leave a permanent mark and might be as simple as a verbal phrase or a hand gesture.

The first stage in proving a defamation claim, or determining if you can issue a cease and desist letter, is identifying the sort of defamation that occurred. 

Statute of Limitations in The Legal System

In most cases, you have one year to sue someone before you may file a lawsuit against them. The length of time varies from state to state, but as a general guideline, one year is the usual length of time for a statute of limitations to apply. The only exception is in the case of a government agency, when time periods may be adjusted as needed. Most of the time, suing within a one-year period guarantees that you meet the time criteria for bringing a progressive lawsuit.

In some states, the statute of limitation is shorter. Find states where the average statute of limitations is low, including:

  • California
  • Delaware
  • District of Columbia
  • Kansas
  • Maryland
  • New Hampshire
  • North Carolina
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Carolina
  • Texas

Below, a comprehensive list of all 50 states outlines local statutes of limitations:

  • Alabama — 2 years
  • Alaska — 6 years for real or personal property
  • Arizona — 2 years
  • Arkansas — 3 years
  • California — 3 years
  • Colorado — 2 years
  • Connecticut  2 years
  • Delaware — 2 years
  • District of Columbia — 3 years
  • Florida — 4 years
  • Georgia — 4 years
  • Hawaii — 2 years
  • Idaho — 3 years
  • Illinois — 5 years
  • Indiana — 6 years
  • Iowa — 5 years
  • Kansas — 2 years
  • Kentucky — 5 years
  • Louisiana — 1 year
  • Maine — 6 years
  • Maryland — 3 years
  • Massachusetts — 3 years
  • Michigan — 3 years
  • Minnesota — 6 years
  • Mississippi — 3 years
  • Missouri — 5 years
  • Montana — 4 years
  • Nebraska — 4 years
  • Nevada — 3 years
  • New Hampshire — 3 years
  • New Jersey — 6 years
  • New Mexico — 4 years
  • New York — 3 years
  • North Carolina — 3 years
  • North Dakota — 6 years
  • Ohio — 2 years
  • Oklahoma — 2 years
  • Oregon — 6 years
  • Pennsylvania — 2 years
  • Rhode Island — 10 years
  • South Carolina — 3 years
  • South Dakota — 6 years
  • Tennessee — 3 years
  • Texas — 2 years
  • Utah — 3 years
  • Vermont — 3 years
  • Virginia — 5 years
  • Washington — 3 years
  • West Virginia — 2 years
  • Wisconsin — 2 years
  • Wyoming — 6 years

What Happens If I File Late?

It is not always the case that late claims are dismissed promptly by the courts. A defendant will very certainly bring this to the judge’s notice, and the appropriate measures will be taken from that point on. File late and you run the danger of having to deal with the following issues:

Affirmative Defenses  The defendant may submit a complaint claiming that the lawsuit was filed at an inopportune time and that the losses suffered were unrelated to the case at hand.
Motions to Dismiss A motion to dismiss may be filed by the defendant, essentially requesting that a court dismiss an out-of-date lawsuit.
Federal/State Statutes  It is possible that federal and state laws may require your claim to be thrown out if it is filed outside of the prescribed time frame.

Deciding to File a Cease and Desist Letter

  • Cease and desist letters are very complicated, and specific wording is required in order to establish credibility for your position. 
  • It is possible that your letter may be ignored or considered inadequate for a legitimate case if it does not correctly describe the damages, injury, and other facts concerning your case using language that is appropriate in a court of law
  • Alternatively, you may hire a lawyer to draft a stop and desist letter on your behalf, but this will be more costly and take longer than you expect.

Find Out How to Draft a Cease and Desist Letter in Minutes!

DoNotPay is a safe solution! The cease and desist letter DoNotPay drafts details the information about the case, demands retraction, warns against any impending statements, and will order that the accused abides by local state law.

All you need to do is:

1. Search Defamation on DoNotPay.

2. Tell us about your situation:

    • Were the statements slander or libel?
    • What were the statements?
    • Why are they false or misleading?
    • What consequences have you suffered as a result of these statements?

3. Based on your location, DoNotPay will immediately generate a formal demand letter on your behalf, with the most relevant state legislation regarding defamation.

That’s it! You can expect a detailed drafted cease and desist letter to your cause, in an instant! 

What Else Can DoNotPay Do?

DoNotPay doesn’t just stop at helping you write cease and desist letters. The AI-powered robot lawyer helps with day-to-day issues such as cancellation of subscriptions, tax exemptions, appealing of parking tickets, and so much more with just a few clicks! 

Take a look at what else we can offer:


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