Florida companies sometimes receive an unfavorable review. However, it’s important to know when this might be considered business defamation and how it could affect them.
What is defamation?
Defamation is a false statement that causes harm to a victim. It can affect the victim personally and even financially. The person making the defamatory statements can do so through written or spoken form, known as libel or slander, respectively. A business can be defamed when someone makes an outrageous and damaging statement about it that is not true. If a business suffers financially, the business owner can file a business defamation lawsuit against the individual who made the false statement.
What are the elements of a business defamation claim?
If you believe that your business has suffered due to defamation, you may have the right to file a lawsuit. There are certain elements that must be in place to prove your claim.
A false statement must have been made about the business. You would have to prove that the claim is false and defamatory. This statement can’t just be an opinion. For example, if a person claims that the business engages in illegal child labor, this could be damaging to the business’ reputation. Customers could stop supporting the business if they believe the claim, which could cost the company much-needed business and profits.
The defamatory statement must be published. It could appear online or in print form in a newspaper or magazine. This means it was made public for anyone to see.
The next element is fault. If someone made a defamatory statement that resulted in the business suffering damages, it means the defendant was at fault and knew that the statement would be damaging.
You would have to prove that your business suffered economic damages. This means that it lost money as a direct result of the defamation.
Defamation can hurt a business’ reputation and ability to earn money. If this happened to your company, fight back.