Recent Posts

How to Unmask Anonymous Yelp Reviewers Who Defame Your Business
Posted on 21 Jan 2014 by Lee Berlik

The First Amendment protects anonymous speech, including online reviews of products and services written by people using fake names. The right to anonymous speech, however, is not absolute. Defamatory speech , whether or not anonymous, is not entitled... Read More

AP Reporter Accused of Libel by Tweet
Posted on 31 Mar 2011 by Lee Berlik

Did an Associated Press reporter commit a foul against an NBA referee earlier this year by defaming him on Twitter during a league game? On March 14, 2011, National Basketball Association official Bill Spooner filed a federal defamation case against... Read More

Fresenius Medical Care Sued for Allegedly Defamatory Statements of Employee
Posted on 18 Sep 2014 by Lee Berlik

As a business owner, you can't control everything your employees will do or say. What if one of them defames the character of another employee while on the job? Can the business be held responsible? If the employee uttered the defamatory words while... Read More

Tags: defamation

Defamation Claim Against Virginia Lawyer Goes Forward
Posted on 22 Nov 2010 by Lee Berlik

Statements made by litigants and their attorneys in judicial proceedings cannot form the basis for a defamation action because they are protected by an absolute privilege. But what if an attorney, desirous of increased media exposure, takes copies of... Read More

Virginia Supreme Court Declines to Set Aside Defamation Verdict Against County Administrator
Posted on 9 Feb 2011 by Lee Berlik

In Virginia, as in other states, potentially defamatory statements made in official government proceedings receive protection from defamation claims . But some such statements get the benefit of absolute privilege, which means that even a knowingly false... Read More

Virginia Right to Nonsuit Unaffected by Federal Court Dismissal
Posted on 10 Oct 2012 by Lee Berlik

Dr. Adel S. Kebaish filed a defamation case in Fairfax County Circuit Court against INOVA Health Care Services and several doctors alleging defamation , breach of contract , tortious interference , conspiracy , wrongful termination and unjust enrichment... Read More

Defamation Lawsuit Exposes Redskins Owner to Ridicule
Posted on 8 Feb 2011 by Lee Berlik

It doesn't take a defamation expert to see the flaws in the $2 million libel lawsuit filed this week by Redskins owner Dan Snyder against the Washington City Paper. Mr. Snyder took offense at an article titled, " The Cranky Redskins Fan's... Read More

"Girls Gone Wild" Defamation Suit Nets $3 Million
Posted on 25 Mar 2011 by Lee Berlik

Kids these days. The use of fake IDs by teens is nothing new, but when that ID contains the name of a real person, and the imposter goes on to do naughty things while posing as someone else, the law of defamation can come into play. And if you're... Read More

Virginia Defamation Lawyer's Arguments Rejected in Warren County
Posted on 10 Jun 2011 by Lee Berlik

When SolAVerde's attorney spoke to the media about his client's defamation claims against the Town of Front Royal and certain councilmen, he sounded pretty confident. The court, however, disagreed with his arguments and dismissed the Town from... Read More

Lawyer Review Leads to Defamation Lawsuit
Posted on 25 Apr 2011 by Lee Berlik

Consumer review sites continue to grow in popularity. Sites like Angie's List , Avvo , and Yelp (to name but a few) allow people to post their experiences with lawyers, doctors, hairdressers, restaurants, roofers, and just about anyone else,... Read More

Virginia's Subpoena Power Does Not Extend Beyond Its Borders
Posted on 21 Apr 2015 by Lee Berlik

Back in 2012, the Alexandria Circuit Court ruled in an Internet defamation case that discovery could be obtained from a nonresident third party by serving a subpoena on the company's registered agent in Virginia. That decision was reversed last week... Read More

Prominent Defamation Lawyers Pursue Sherrod's Libel Case Against Breitbart
Posted on 22 Feb 2011 by Lee Berlik

Last summer, United States Department of Agriculture official Shirley Sherrod was forced to resign after conservative activist Andrew Breitbart posted online a speech that she had made 23 years before, when she worked for a nonprofit organization. The... Read More

In Lawyer's Defamation Action, Draft Complaint Afforded Absolute Privilege
Posted on 26 May 2011 by Lee Berlik

Virginia courts have long held that statements made in connection with judicial proceedings are entitled to absolute protection from defamation liability. To encourage truthfulness in litigation, Virginia public policy has extended an absolute privilege... Read More