Defamation of Character Tennessee Overview
When it comes to having your character and integrity damaged by someone else through defamation - the most important thing to do is get acquainted with your state’s libel laws. We’ll teach you how to seek compensation for any damages you might have experienced either in the workplace or in your personal life!
Read on to understand the nature of Tennessee’s defamation laws and the steps you need to take to take action against defamation!
Survival Points: The Basic Facts About Defamation
Defamation is broken down into two basic categories:
- Libel: If the defamatory statement was published in written form (be it online or in print.)
- Slander: If the defamatory statement was spoken out loud by someone.
Both of these actions are considered civil wrongs (legally known as torts). These categories are important because they can help you determine the damages you can seek for the defamation you have been affected by.
Private vs Public Figures in Cases of Character Defamation
- Private Figure - Someone outside the attention of the public and public controversies. Individuals must prove negligence, meaning the statement made about them was published recklessly, without consideration for the truth.
- Public Figure - This can include politicians, celebrities, or other individuals of recognition. A public figure has to prove actual malice. The statement must have been published either with full knowledge that it was false and with the intention to harm.
How Long Does Tennessee Give You to File a Defamation Lawsuit?
Tennessee’s statute of limitations for defamation lawsuits is relatively short. In cases of slander, you are only given 6 months to file a complaint and the countdown starts from the moment the defamatory statement was spoken. Meanwhile, cases of libel are given a year exactly from the moment they are published.
Tennessee’s Four-Pronged Defamation Test
In order to prove a statement as defamatory or slanderous in the state of Tennessee, there are 4 characteristics that must be proven. To be considered defamation, it must meet the following four criteria:
|Proof of falsehood||The statement being declared as defamatory must be false. This means that if someone defames your character by using facts (for example, telling others that you spent time in prison when it is true) then it is not defamatory|
|The plaintiff in question is being addressed||The statement must be about the plaintiff in question and there must be a clear reference to them. If you took a defamatory statement as personal but you were only being alluded to vaguely and not directly mentioned, this will not help.|
|Negligence||It must have been published negligently (negligence meaning that it was made without consideration or investigation into the facts).|
|Harm was done||The statement must have brought about harm to the plaintiff. Simply hurting the individual is not considered harmful. Tangible harm must have been made to their reputation, work, social connections, etc.|
What a Cease and Desist Letter Can Do for You
- The letter works to help you communicate your concerns to the person who has made the defamatory statement against you.
- It serves as a warning for the other person to stop any future defamatory remarks, and possibly even to retract their statement.
- The letter is not overly complicated and may not require the services of a lawyer to be written.
- No attorney is required in order to send the letter to the person who has made the statement. This will save you from paying hefty legal fees.
DoNotPay Writes You a Defamation Cease and Desist Letter
Writing a cease and desist letter should not be a hassle. DoNotPay created the Defamation Demand Letter product so that people can put a stop to defamation easily! The process is simple and all it takes is:
1. Search for Defamation Demand Letters on DoNotPay.
2. Choose whether you are facing slander, libel, or both.
3. Type in the exact statements the individual or entity said about you.
You’ll get a polished letter with all of the necessary information! All you need to do is mail, fax, or hand the letter to the defamer.
Other Things DoNotPay Can Help You With
- Airline refunds
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- And more!