Social Media Defamation In Maryland

Written by ruxandra

Maryland is one of the states in the U.S. that allows plaintiffs to file a defamation claim under a provision commonly known as defamation per se. This means that the alleged defamatory statement is inherently defamatory and, in this case, the plaintiff doesn’t need to prove the actual damages to win compensation. But what happens when we are talking about social media defamation in Maryland? Should you sue for personal injury in MD?

Libel & Slander In Maryland

The difference between libel and slander is in regard to the channel of communication. Libel refers to written communication, while slander refers to oral speech. In the case of social media, we are talking about libel. According to the law and to any personal injury lawyer from Maryland, the elements that need to be proved in a defamation claim are the following:

  • The existence of a defamatory statement committed by the defendant in relation with the plaintiff
  • The falsity of the statement
  • The legal liability of the defendant
  • The harm suffered by the plaintiff because of the defamatory statement

In Maryland, there is a difference between defamatory per se and defamatory per quod. In the first case, your Annapolis injury attorney doesn’t need to prove the damages you suffered. This applies to statements that falsely accuse an individual of committing a crime or being immoral. In the second case, your Annapolis injury lawyer will need to prove the actual damage and that the defamatory statement was powerful enough to ruin the plaintiff’s reputation.

Whom Should You Sue For Personal Injury In MD?

In case you or a loved one have been the victims of social media defamation, you can either sue the blogger/commentator/journalist or you can bring a claim against the internet service provider (ISP). The reason many people choose to sue the ISP is that a company is more likely to have the money to pay the damages than an individual.

In per se cases, the law in Maryland implies general damages. In per quod cases, your personal injury lawyer from Maryland will need to prove special damages such as necessary and immediate compensatory damages, punitive damages and other damages awarded by the court. You should remember that, when it comes to social media, even if a defamatory statement is not written as an absolute truth, but rather as a personal opinion, it can still be considered libel. For example, if X writes that he or she thinks Y is hitting their children, and this is a false statement, this can still be considered a statement of fact, depending on how well X knows Y and what makes them believe Y is hitting their children.

Annapolis Injury Attorney

Defamation is a serious thing and it can affect an individual’s entire life. This is why, if you believe you have been the victim of a defamatory statement, you need to contact a personal injury lawyer from Maryland and recover damages. Call the best Annapolis injury lawyer at (443) 569-3950 or send an email at [email protected] to receive a free evaluation of your case.

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