Can a Lawyer Sue you for a Bad Review | With Lawyer Sue Process
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Online reviews play an important role in the revenue and growth of any business. According to an annual local consumer review survey by BrightLocal.com, most customers examine and read the reviews to know the quality of the business. At the same time, a good review can help grow your business. In addition, is also best for your good reputation and goodwill. A negative or bad review can cause great harm to your business and reputation. Let’s learn can a lawyer sue you for a bad review.
In this article, we will know how a lawyer can sue you for a bad review and what circumstances he can do so.
Can a Lawyer Sue you for a Bad Review
Legal action against bad reviews, a new trend in America
Many people know that if you post something on social media and it’s false or defamatory, then the person who posted can be sued. However, this is not always true for online customer feedback – sometimes businesses will pursue legal options when someone leaves negative comments about their company even though they have no intention of misleading anyone else!
There has been quite an interesting case study across various states which set precedents regarding these types of lawsuits between customers/businesses.
Recently, a few mass lawsuits have been filed against people who write bad reviews about products. For example, an Illinois woman received over 12 lawsuits from different companies for allegedly writing negative reviews of their business practices on Yelp, Google Local, and other similar websites under anonymous names.
Many consumers are shocked to discover that they can be sued for giving their honest opinions on the Internet. However, current law allows them to sue reviewers if the reviews are not considered “protected speech” under the First Amendment.
This means one cannot simply create fake accounts on these review sites to spite others or damage another company’s reputation with false statements.
How can a lawyer sue you for a bad review?
If you or your business sustains a bad review for any reason continuously, you can take legal action against the reviewer and claim the damages for your losses.
William B. Hanley, attorney at law, is offering his services to offer comprehensive legal advice and guidance. All this, in addition to reliable representation to clients facing complicated business lawsuit cases. The cases include defamation cases and bad reviews cases.
He critically handles your case, discusses your innovative case with extra care and attention, conducts a valuable and thorough investigation, and collects the factual proof to deal with your claims.
Being an experienced California business litigation attorney, he can fight for your legal rights to protect them and your business organization. Also, they can help you recover and compensate for losses to your business.
Elements of a defamation claim
If someone files a lawsuit, it does not mean that the other party will automatically win the case. The plaintiff has many proofs the establish the elements of Defamation with the help of more evidence in most cases.
A normal defamation claim contains the following elements.
The publications do not need that the reviewer exposes the statement in a book or any magazine. The publication in the online suffices defines the defamation claim till it communicates with at least one person than the party of which review is about.
If anyone publishes a bad review about any individual or company, a lawyer can sue the person by filing the case.
A person can review someone if it is bad without committing the offense of Defamation. Truth is a good tool and absolute defense to this legal action. Additionally, a person can offer an opinion based on their own experience for a longer period as it will not be untrue.
For example, the people can freely say that the taste of the food was bad, but they cannot say that the taste of the food was bad because the place has infestation with rats if this fact was not true.
A claim of Defamation also needs that the plaintiff proves that the negative statement causes him some kind of injury, normally economical. In the case of business, records prove that business is growing until the posting of reviews, and the targeted customers may test that they refused to go on business with the firm or company due to bad reviews.
Unlike several states offer unquestionable privileged speech that can not be dependent on the defamation claim. This aspect includes testimony provided in the court, contact created during senate hearings, and other types. On average, 30 states pass anti-strategic lawsuits against public participant laws that offer safety to people who post negative reviews.
The basis of these laws is that the consumers should not hesitate to provide honest feedback about their experiences as customers. These laws permit a defendant to determine the dismissal of the case as early in the process before the incurring of litigation expenses.
The lawyer can sue those individuals for these types of cases, and these individuals should look for legal counsel and help. After filing the petition, the defendant has a limited period to reply and avoid the default judgment.
Consumer review fairness act (CRFA)
The consumer review fairness act works for the clients to [protect them from intimidation by businesses for posting honest reviews and unjustified punishments.
According to the act, it is illegal for any business institution to use a contract provision that limits about:
- Restricts the client to review a company’s product services and conduct.
- The customer who gives the review imposes a fine, penalty, and fee for the act.
- Need that the customers should relinquish their intellectual property rights in the review.
California’s Anti Slapp Statute
California anti-Slapp Strategic lawsuit against public participation offers relief to SLAPP lawsuits. The company helps prevent people from using potential threats of a lawsuit, unfounded lawsuits to silence and intimidate customers or other people to use their right of petition and free speech under the first amendment.
Therefore, if the lawyer sues a person for a bad review, they have a right to file a petition to request the court dismiss the lawsuit because it lacks merits and facts.
What you need to prove Defamation
To prove the case of Defamation, the plaintiff should prove the following elements.
- The defendant offered false statements and claimed to be factual
- The defendant told and published the false statements to the third party
- The statement was not confidential, and unprivileged
- The defamatory statement leads to injury, harm, and other losses to the defamed party.
What you have to prove for bad reviews
To sue a bad review, you must prove that the facts and statements are not true and qualify as Defamation. This needs that the statement should fulfill the following factors.
- It was a false statement.
- The publication of the review was for the third party and some other individual who brought the case.
- The statement was more like opinion rather than a fact
- It destroyed the reputation of the defamed party
- It was not a confidential and secret review
Possible damages that you can recover
In the defamation lawsuit by the lawyer for a bad review of the following damages, you can recover in the defamation lawsuit.
- The compensatory or actual damages for the real lost earnings due to the false statements and facts.
- Noneconomic damages that work as compensation for the company a bad reputation
- Mitigating damages to less the loss which the company suffers
- Punitive fine and damages to give further punishment to the reviewer
How can you sue someone by seeking legal help?
If you face bad reviews online, it will be better to contact an internet defamation attorney. Because all lawyers attend law schools and pass the bar exam, most lawyers practice in the different areas of law and know how to handle these types of cases.
Different lawyers are working on family cases, business cases, online Defamation for bad reviews. While some service for the real facts of Defamation and the removal of consumers’ bad reviews.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you be sued for the bad review?
To sue for a negative or bad review, you will prove that the statements and facts qualify as Defamation. The statement should satisfy the facts and elements. The statement was false. So, the opponent party discloses the statement to the third party and the other person who filed the case.
Is it illegal to tell people to write a bad review?
The consumer review fairness act restricts the people and companies to add such terms and conditions to their contracts that ban clients from posting negative and bad reviews. Such organizations and companies or individuals have to pay fines if they do so.
What should you say if someone gives you a bad review?
You should be polite if you get a bad review from anyone. You should admit your mistakes and thank me for your comments and review. I am sorry to hear that you had a bad experience with my service or product. I appreciate and encourage you to bring this issue to my knowledge.
Is it Defamation to give a bad review?
If they can prove that their review and comments are true, they can Defamation. Therefore, courts can consider the defamatory material true if the reviewer can prove that their negative review is true. If and if the basis of the proof is on proper material, their statements were according to the true material.
Should anyone leave a bad review?
No, not; in any case, don’t leave a bad review and expose another person’s acts, deeds, business reputation; instead, you should try to handle it internally and then don’t go back. If you cannot deal with it internally, let the business go on and fail in its dealings. So, don’t push it a ledge just because your experience was bad.
Every legal dispute and conflict needs specific knowledge, experience, and tools. So it is essential to hire the type of attorney familiar with the area and field of lawsuits to your need and requirements.
If anyone posts bad reviews for an individual, a company, products, or services, the lawyer has the legal right to file a lawsuit against him. If there are enough proofs and pieces of evidence found against him, he will charge with fines and damages to pay to whom the review posted.
I’m a driven and accomplished law graduate and post-graduate, passionate about sharing my legal expertise via my blog. I hold a Bachelor’s degree in Law from the University of London (UK) and a Master’s in Law from the University of Derby (UK). Both gave me the foundational knowledge and skills to excel in my chosen career path.
Throughout my academic journey, I have gained extensive knowledge in various fields of Law, including Corporate and Business Law in the USA, Criminal Law, International Law, US Copyright law, and most importantly, American Constitutional law.