You have the right to defend your name and character against unfound statements made against you. This is why there are laws that protect you against defamation, libel, and slander. But when your defense requires a lawsuit, you may not have the financial resources to properly restore your name. This problem can be solved by taking out an umbrella insurance policy for defamation. Here, Muller Insurance examines how this type of policy can help you in these situations.
Defining Defamation, Slander, and Libel
The legal definition of defamation is damage to the reputation of someone through false statements presented as fact. If someone makes a negative claim about you that is untrue, then you have the right to take action against them for damaging your character. There are some important characteristics of a false statement that qualify it as defamation, including:
- The lie cannot be stated as an opinion. For instance, someone saying that they think you are mean is not defamation because that fact is impossible to objectively quantify.
- The person accusing you of something negative must show malicious intent.
- The statement qualifies as reckless regard for the truth. This means the person must either know that what they are saying is not true.
- The accuser was negligent with their statement. If they should know something is false but said it anyway, then it qualifies as defamation.
Further, slander and libel are both types of defamation and often used interchangeably, even though they have distinct definitions. Libel is a defamatory statement that has been made in writing, including statements made digitally. Slander refers to a defamatory statement that is spoken orally. This type of defamation is often harder to prove unless the statement was recorded.
How Umbrella Insurance Can Help
You may not immediately think that an insurance policy can help protect you against defamatory statements. However, umbrella insurance is a broad type of policy that covers many things that can affect you financially. It is usually used as an extension of your existing coverage if you are worried about potentially overextending your homeowners, auto, or other policies, but it’s also helpful in these situations.
If you take someone to court to defend your name and character, umbrella coverage will help pay your legal fees and recoup any losses you may have suffered because of the defamatory attack. Conversely, if you have a defamation lawsuit brought against you, it will also give you coverage for any award judgments that a jury requires you to pay. Either way, umbrella insurance from Muller Insurance is there to protect you in defamation cases.
Be Prepared with Muller Insurance
A defamation lawsuit can be timely and expensive, which is why you must be prepared to pay a lawyer and make up for any lost wages you suffered from spending time in court. Umbrella insurance from Muller Insurance is there to provide coverage for defamation lawsuits that include slander and libel. If you want to learn more about an umbrella insurance policy, contact us today.