Statement Protect Reporter Libel And Slander
Are news reporters and their statements protected against libel and/or slander claims?
Damages can be recovered if the newspaper’s story had inaccuracies which hurt the reputation of a person or business. A newspaper or other media outlet is responsible for the stories it publishes. Good journalists usually attribute controversial statements to the person who made them. For example, it’s not that Smith murdered his wife, but that the police say Smith murdered his wife. Or, at least, Smith allegedly murdered his wife (someone has alleged that statement). However, even quotes with correct attributions can contribute to a libel action if the story taken as a whole is deemed defamatory. Note that defamation arises only when false statements of fact are made that harm the reputation of another. A reviewer could write that your restaurant serves terrible lasagna – but as long as the “opinion” does not consitute an assertion of fact, there will be no basis for a claim.
If you believe you may have a valid defamation claim, contact a libel and slander attorney in your area.
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