Practice Area: Employment / Labor
Outcome: Defense verdict
Description: Ms. Barish obtained a defense verdict in a highly publicized case involving a claim for defamation. Ms. Barish represented a local Museum and its President/Chief Executive Officer in a claim for defamation brought by a former consultant for the Museum. The plaintiff alleged that the August 27, 2007 letter informing him that his services with the Museum were no longer needed contained a defamatory statement. The letter was drafted by the Museum President and copies sent to the members of the Museum Executive Committee. According to the plaintiff, the alleged publication and republication of the content of the letter resulted in his inability to have contracts with other organizations renewed or to establish any new contracts with the Philadelphia hospitality and tourism industry. The plaintiff accused a number of well-known and preeminent Philadelphia business leaders as well as a City Councilwoman and the City Representative of not contracting with him as a result of their knowledge of the alleged defamatory statement contained in the letter, allegations that were denied by the defendants. Plaintiff presented his case over a period of four days and Ms. Barish presented 22 witnesses in two-and-a-half days. After less than two hours of deliberation, the jury entered a verdict in favor of the defendants and in so doing found that there were no defamatory statements contained in the August 27, 2007 letter.