Defamation

In Winklevoss v. Steinberg, 2019 NY Slip Op 02419 (App. Div. 1st Dept. March 28, 2019), the court unanimously affirmed the dismissal of plaintiffs’ defamation claim. The court based its decision on the plaintiffs’ status (public figures) and their failure to prove “actual malice”, the applicable standard under these circumstances. As to their status, the…

Read More Winklevoss Twins’ Defamation Claim Dismissed; Actual Malice Not Shown

A recent decision, Petrisko v Animal Medical Center, No. 151573/2018, 2019 NY Slip Op 30679(U), 2019 WL 1311026 (N.Y. Sup Ct, New York County Mar. 22, 2019), highlights important features of New York defamation law – such as when alleged defamatory statements are non-actionable opinion, and the specificity with which such claims must be alleged.…

Read More Defamation Claim Dismissed; Alleged Defamatory Statements Were Non-Actionable Opinion, and Allegations Were Insufficiently Specific as to Time

In Zervos v. Trump, 2019 NY Slip Op 01851 (App. Div. 1st Dept. March 14, 2019), the court held, inter alia, that Summer Zervos’ defamation lawsuit against President Trump may proceed, and is not barred by the U.S. Constitution’s Supremacy Clause.[1]The court also denied defendant’s motion to dismiss plaintiff’s defamation claim for failure to state…

Read More Defamation Case Against Trump Not Barred By Supremacy Clause, First Department Holds

Defamation claims are not easy to prove. One (substantial) hurdle that a defamation plaintiff must overcome is demonstrating that the alleged defamatory remark was a false statement of fact, rather than (non-actionable) opinion. This is illustrated by a recent court decision, Cardali v. Slater, 2018 NY Slip Op 08544 (App. Div. 1st Dept. Dec. 13, 2018).…

Read More Libel Claim Properly Dismissed; “Common Criminal” Remark Was Nonactionable Opinion

In Avril Nolan, Claimant, State of New York, Defendant., No. 123283, 61 Misc. 3d 1225(A), 2018 N.Y. Slip Op. 51789(U), 2018 WL 6497131 (N.Y.Ct.Cl., Nov. 08, 2018), the Court of Claims awarded the Claimant – a model whose image was used by the New York State Division of Human Rights in an advertising campaign to…

Read More Model Awarded $125k in Damages Arising Out of Use of Image in HIV Rights Campaign

In Gillings v. New York Post, 2018 NY Slip Op 07413 (App. Div. 2nd Dept. Nov. 7, 2018), the court affirmed the dismissal of a defamation action against the New York Post and Julia Marsh, on the basis of New York Civil Rights Law § 74. The court summarized the law as follows: Civil Rights Law § 74…

Read More Defamation Action Against New York Post Dismissed Under NY Civil Rights Law § 74

In Volpe v. Paniccioli, 2017 NY Slip Op 51554(U) (N.Y. Sup. Ct. Sup. Cty. Nov. 15, 2017), a case involving allegations of (inter alia) sexual harassment, the court denied the plaintiff’s motion to dismiss defendant’s counterclaims for, e.g., defamation. By her motion, plaintiff “contends that the statements she has made are absolutely privileged as they were made…

Read More Court in Sexual Harassment Case Holds That Providing Information to Press Was Not “Absolutely Privileged”; Denies Motion to Dismiss Defamation Counterclaim

In Sandia v. Wal-Mart Stores, East LP, 2017 WL 4862427 (2d Cir. Oct. 27, 2017) (Summary Order), the court affirmed the district court’s award of summary judgment to defendant on plaintiff’s claims of racial and national origin discrimination, retaliation, and a hostile work environment in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of…

Read More Defamation Claim Fails; Statements to Prospective Employer Were Subject to Qualified Privilege

In Edwards v. Nicolai, 2017 NY Slip Op 06235 (App. Div. 1st Dept. Aug. 22, 2017), the court modified a lower court’s Order (issued by Judge Shlomo Hagler) dismissing plaintiff’s causes of action for gender discrimination in violation of the New York State and New York City Human Rights Laws, to deny defendant’s motion as to those…

Read More Court Reinstates “Too Cute” Gender Discrimination Claims Under NYS and NYC Human Rights Laws