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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    4

    Default Slanderous Web Postings

    I have bumped into a situation where someone has posted false information on a popular industry website, damaging to my company.

    It looks like the only way we are going to get this material removed is to sue.
    We are in Colorado. This person is in Florida.

    Can we file in court in Colorado and serve the other party in Florida? Which court? Small claims?

    I don't think I need an attorney.

    Thanks for the assist.

    Regards

    D.Wood

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Key West, FL
    Posts
    2,350

    Default Re: Slanderous Web Postings

    Any court has to have subject matter jurisdiction and personal jurisdiction.

    Colorado courts would have NO personal jurisdiction over anyone in Florida. The case could not proceed and would have to be dismissed. Serving a defendant in Florida would undoubtedly generate an answer with the affirmative defense of a lack of personal jurisdiction and a demand for summary judgment. You would look like a fool.

    This type of a case can not be done in any small claims court. A court must have subject matter jurisdiction and no small claims court has subject matter jurisdiction in such a case. It is only viable as a major case in either county or circuit court.

    You would have to hire a Florida attorney to file it. You would also have to register in Florida as a foreign corporation and hire a registered agent. That is the only way your corporation would have standing to appear in court in Florida as a plaintiff.

    The other approach is to sue in US District Court under diversity of citizenship, but I doubt you can prove the required minimum of $50,000 in damages for the court to have jurisdiction. You are also looking at an even more expensive option than suing in Florida.

    You don't think you need an attorney? Well, you better rethink that because you are rather clueless when you posted your question.

    You also better research what libel actually is before you go talk to an attorney so you don't waste your time and money.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Toledo, OH
    Posts
    16,307

    Default Re: Slanderous Web Postings

    Quote Quoting dr5chrome
    View Post
    I don't think I need an attorney.
    I think you think incorrectly.

    You're going to have to file in Florida. But before you even consider that, what was said, and what are your actual damages? (You being angry about the posting is insufficient.)

    If you have actual monetary damages, can you prove them?

    If you can prove them, do you have the 3 years and upwards of $50K it typically costs to pursue a defamation case?

    You really ought to consult with an attorney.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    98,846

    Default Re: Slanderous Web Postings

    A defamation case in a regular trial court certainly could cost $50K or more to litigate, especially if it's against a media defendant, but I don't know that the amount can be said to be typical. I would expect a typical lawsuit to be resolved inside of 18 months. Not that $25K and 18 months is materially different from $50K and 3 years for most would-be litigants....

    It's difficult for me to imagine a defamation case that's serious enough to file in court, where the damages at issue would fall within the limits of a small claims court. Such a claim would seem to be of close to nuisance value, and the publicity from the lawsuit could end up doing more damage than the original false statement.

    Colorado small claims courts cannot hear cases involving defamation (libel or slander). C.R.S. 13-6-402.

    To sue in a Florida small claims court, you would have to travel to Florida for the court hearing. Between the time and expense of travel, and maximum recovery of $5,000, what would a victory be worth?

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