negotiating a deal but bc of defamation, deal wasn’t signed Elements 1) made a false statement (not an opinion) 2) the statement about plaintiff was defamatory 3) statement was false 4) statement was communicated to at least one other person 5) plaintiff’s reputations was harmed Where is the “intent”? The statement being made bc it’s assumed we make the statements we want to say
Defamation - defenses Defenses Statute of limitations – one yr Absolute privilege In certain activities, like judging, witnesses testifying, lawyers advocating, and legislators debating, they are exempt from defamation claim ev en in bad faith Qualified privileges Malice has to be proven with the defamation Media reports on pblic officials, celebrities, or public events that are newsworthy In order to overcome, must: 1) knew statement was false 2) acted with reckless disregard for whether statement was T/F Injurious Falsehood Slander of goods and trade libel, disparagement of goods Can’t receive any damages unless the plaintiff proves actual economic loss If it’s true, it doesn’t matter if it’s damaging bc then it’s not defamation Freedom of speech – opinion Not as good of a defense as truth bc opinions are subjective How does the hidden 4 th element - malice factor in? Public figures need to prove malice bc they’re putting themselves out there really hard to prove malice
Intentional Torts (cont’d.) False Imprisonment Elements 1) Defendant intentionally confined plaintiff Can be done with threats (don’t move or I’ll kill you) If accidentally locked in room, it’s negligence 2) without plaintiff’s consent If you voluntarily stay where you are, then there’s no false imprisonment Ex. if someone accuses you of doing something and you stand where you are, can’t make that charge 3) without lawful authority or in an unreasonable manner Someone who owns the property or is authorized to Physical force unreasonable unless it’s required for detention Detaining can’t be for an unreasonable amount of time 4) “injured” the plaintiff – injury of freedom D must be aware of the confinement If you can just walk out, there’s no confinement P required to be aware bc of third element – injury (of freedom)
False Imprisonment Defenses? Need lawful authority Parent-child relationship means that ur kid can’t sue them Preventing someone from injuring themselves Holding a shoplifter usually isn’t reasonable, unless they’re doing suspicious things
CASE Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Cockrell (Texas App. Ct. 2001) A guy looked suspicious in Wal-Mart and strip searched him, but he didn’t have any merchandise on him.
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