Copyright Infringment Lawyer, Internet Defamation, and Internet Privacy: Statute of Limitations for Internet Slander Cases | Speak Now or Forever Hold Your Peace

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March 10, 2011


I have a Facebook person (I deactivated my account) trashing me, basically making statements that constitute Libel. I sent her a Cease & Desist letter. What if she doesn't comply?

I believe Missouri ruled that Injurious Falsehood had a 5 year statute of limitations. I have used this wording in my complaint. Does this help?

Understanding the statute of limitations in a defamation, slander or libel law matter is perhaps the most important thing that you need to understand. Especially on the Internet, libel can often occur long before you see it. But if there is a two-year statute of limitations and the blog post went up 3 years ago, you may be out of luck. More importantly, you need to act fast before various Internet vendors such as ISPs destroy IP information which you may need to identify the person who posted the defamation.

In an online defamation case it's prudent to assume your statute of limitations runs from the date of first publication. There are some states that recognize a publication of defamation occurs each day the online defamation appears online and the statute of limitations is tolled indefinitely until the publication is removed...but don't count on it. Online defamation issues can be more complex than they first appear. Consult an online defamation attorney specialist to protect your rights.

You have some good resources and advice on your little blog, you did a good job of weaving in a SEO targeted article with good info.

Please give me a call at your earliest convenience as there are a few cases that I may be able to refer to you. I tend to get a lot of first calls when people actually need attorneys.

With my kindest regards,
Michael Roberts
Victim's Advocate, Forensic Analyst and Litigation Support Consultant

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As an internet defamation attorney, I am often asked whether an attorney licensed in Michigan can represent someone in another state. The simple answer is it depends. Only attorneys licensed to practice in a particular state can actually file a lawsuit in that state. Fortunately, all attorneys have the ability to associate with local counsel and be admitted pro hac vice (or for the particular lawsuit only).

While state law governs defamation of character and other online defamation issues, an experienced online defamation attorney should be able to help you given access to governing defamation case law.

Remember that not all attorneys understand issues in online defamation like online defamation attorneys. Therefore, a defamation internet issue may require the analysis and advice of an internet defamation lawyer from a different state.

In many states, the statute of limitations is 1 year for defamation, libel and slander claims. Because it is easy for defamation on the internet to get buried, and only become apparent to the person defamed until well after it is posted on-line, many victims of on-line libel are left to argue the 'discovery rule' which tolls the state until it is discovered by the victim. Plaintiff's are much better off working within the one year limit from publication, than arguing the discovery rule. It is important for you attorney to analyze the statute of limitation, communicate the statute to the client and for both the attorney and client to make educated decision about how to proceed.

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