Can I sue for slander or defamation of character?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Can I sue for slander or defamation of character?

I was recently terminated from my job. They never gave me a reason but told me I needed to speak to a detective. The detective told me I was being investigated for theft. I never stole anything or allowed others to steal things. If and when I am not charged with a crime, can I sue the company for slander and defamation of character? The reason I ask is because other companies within the industry that I used to work in have heard things which is making it difficult for me to find work.

Asked on June 6, 2016 under Personal Injury, Utah


S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

You can sue the company for defamation.  Defamation is a false statement communicated to a third party who recognizes the defamatory content and the statement is injurious to your reputation.
Slander is spoken defamation.
Every repetition of the defamatory statement is actionable in a lawsuit for defamation.
Your damages (monetary compensation you are seeking in your lawsuit) would include lost income from losing your job, emotional distress, loss of friends or associates, and if applicable, physical illness.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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