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Gary K. Marshall
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Gary Marshall’s Answers

100 total


  • What is the RCW for libel in WA. state, pertaining to writing a book?

    I am writing a memoir book and I would like to know the libel laws in the state of WA.

    Gary’s Answer

    Defamation is based on common law, not statutory law. It is a very complicated area of law. What follows is a brief summary. Defamation is a false statement, maliciously or knowingly made to injure someone, usually through ridicule and damage to that person's reputation. Libel is written defamation. Slander is oral defamation.

    Defamation requires:

    1) a false statement concerning another person.

    2) an unprivileged communication to a third party

    3) fault amounting to
    for public officials and figures - actual malice (actual knowledge that the statement is false or reckless disregard for the truth or falseness of the statement)
    for private figures - negligence (what a reasonably prudent person would do, acting under the same or similar circumstances)

    4) damages

    I do a lot of work with writers. For more information, see my article Dangerous Talk: Speech and the Law on my law firm website at
    http://www.marshallcomputer.com/resources.html

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  • I am seeking an attorney, in Seattle, WA, who can help me get removed some slanderous sexual comments about me posted on the web

    There are 4 different comments about me on the web. National Blacklist, Bad Boy report and two others

    Gary’s Answer

    Unfortunately this type of behavior is becoming all too common. See my Technology Law Blog for a discussion of the legal issues regarding revenge porn websites. http://marshall2law.com The legal issues are very similar to what you are probably facing. Let me know if I can help.

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  • I was awarded a judgement. How do I go about garnishing the other party?

    I won a civil contempt motion and was awarded judgement. I know where the other party works, what is the process for attaching this to wages? Can anyone point me to a step by step guide to do this myself?

    Gary’s Answer

    Yes there is a reason lawyers charge a lo of money. What we do is hard.

    First make sure you have a judgment. Winning a motion and being awarded money in court is not the same thing as having a judgment. And no, that is not a simple matter that can be answered on this website.

    Once you have a proper judgment then you can proceed to garnishment. Garnishment rules are very complex. If you make even one mistake in the process, the other party may be awarded attorneys fees. This is not something I recommend that you do yourself. In most cases I do not even recommend having an attorney do it. If you want to try, then I agree that the garnishment section of the Washington Practice Manual is a good place to start. It should be available at your local law library.

    I usually record the judgment and then sit back and wait. Eventually the other party will want to obtain credit for some reason and then they will have to pay you first. In the mean time you should be earning interest if you reduced your court award to judgment smartly.

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  • Is it legal to re-sell new with tag clothing on website to outside of U.S. using pictures from the original store website?

    Someone said if I get permission from the store, I can use their picture on my site. Is it true? Is there anything I need to know about reselling?

    Gary’s Answer

    There is a lot you need to know. If the store gives you permission to sell the item and to use their catalog pictures, then you are probably fine there. Make sure it is their picture and not the manufacture’s picture you are using. But what about the original manufacturer? You may have copyright and/or trademark issues with them. Check out my article Legal Issues for Online Sellers available for free download from my law firm website at

    http://www.marshallcomputer.com/resources.html.

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  • I am a 1099 operating as a Sub S Corp. Am I covered under the insurance of the company I sub contract to?

    I do sales only of home improvement products, primarily to homeowners and businesses. The contracts are from the company I sub contract to. I do write up the estimates. I do not ever sign the contracts. If there is an error on the contract and...

    Gary’s Answer

    As the other answer says, it really depends on the written contract between the company and the customer, the oral contract between you and the company, the insurance policy, and any additional facts and circumstances. Are you named on the company’s policy as an additional insured? If not, then I agree that you are probably not insured. Is the company willing to add you to their policy? You need to actually speak with an attorney and have the attorney review your situation and any written contracts before you can get an answer.

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  • Someone secretly recording adults or children on a laptop (both video and audio) without their knowledge or consent.

    We have recently come to discover our children were secretly recorded by another youth (15 years old) using his laptop as the recording device. He saved the file on his laptop (for whatever reason). I believe it is illegal to record anyone with a...

    Gary’s Answer

    The law is not that clear. And it depends on what is being recorded and under what circumstances. In Washington it is illegal to audio record a private conversation without the permission of everyone being recorded (RCW 9.73 Privacy, Violating Right of). But there must be some expectation of privacy. If the recording is say on a playground, then there is no expectation of privacy. Oddly, it is generally not illegal to record video only. There are some exceptions, such as when the person being recorded has some expectation of privacy.

    And there can be restrictions on how the recording is used. Defamation, invasion of privacy, false light, copyright and many other areas of law may come in to play.

    I do not know if the fact that they are minors changes anything. I don’t think so, but I will leave that to others.

    Is this a matter that could be handled without lawyers? Perhaps you could talk to the child’s parents.

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  • Can I be sued for emotional distress or breaching right of publicity?

    I am a photographer that specializes in weddings and boudoir . For weddings I always use a contract with a model release , but I just started shooting the boudoir . I had been getting oral agreements from my subjects ( I know , really bad ide...

    Gary’s Answer

    Obviously you should have written contracts in the future, especially for something as sensitive as boudoir photographs. It should clearly spell out who owns the copyright and what you can and can not do with the pictures. As you know, it is common for the photographer to retain the copyright ownership. You will have fewer disputes and unhappy customers if you are clear about this upfront. The model release is actually less important although it can not hurt.

    As for the current situation, she can sue you for a variety of causes of action, including infliction of emotional distress, breach of contract and invasion of privacy. If you can prove you had permission, then you would prevail. But even if she wins, she still has to prove damages. I am a little suspicious how you could know who viewed your facebook page. But I will take you at your word. If the facts are as you say, then there are no damages. This should discourage her from suing.

    You may also want to do damage control with your unhappy customer. Let her know you thought you had her permission, that you took the photographs down immediately, no strangers saw them, and you will not post them again. Tell her you have learned for your experience and you are going to have an attorney write up a release that clearly states what is expected of you and your customers. And then do it.

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  • Is it illegal for someone to post my information on craigslist ?

    Someone ( I know who ) put a ad on craigslist under casual encounters with my phone number . I then started receiving calls / texts from people . I did NOT know about this . Nor would I consent to it . They are mad at me and this is a form ...

    Gary’s Answer

    This is the type of problem for which there are legal solutions, but they are not very practical.

    Yes, his actions probably violate several federal and state laws. His actions may constitute stalking, which is a federal crime (see 18 USC § 2261A – Stalking and 18 USC § 2261 - Interstate domestic violence). In Washington there are similar laws against stalking, see RCW 9a.46.110 Stalking and RCW 9.61.260 Cyberstalking and against harassment: see RCW 9A.46.020 Definition — Penalties and Chapter 10.14 RCW Harassment.

    You can file a criminal complaint with local authorities. But it is unlikely that the police will do anything on your behalf. They do not have the resources to respond to all complaints and this type of complaint is not a priority for them.

    If this person was a friend, you may want to deal with this as a personal problem. You could try talking to them, or having a mutual friend intervene on your behalf. Why did this friend say these things? Is there a way to repair the relationship or at least get this person to understand your point of view?

    If this is a small matter and you just want to get them to stop, you could consider suing this person yourself in small claims court. You would have to sue them where they live. If you win, and they keep making these statements on craigs list or elsewhere you can sue them again. They will eventually get the message. A letter from an attorney will get them to stop some of the time, but in your case it is hard to imagine that it would be worth the expense of paying an attorney to write a letter or to sue him on your behalf.

    You can also contact Craigslist and have the post removed. After you take down the craigslist add, you may want to simply wait and see if he will tire of harassing you.

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  • I am worried I may be in trouble for cuber stalking .

    I will tell u later

    Gary’s Answer

    I am an Internet Attorney. I am very familiar with the civil law side of the Internet. I am not a criminal attorney. But here is some advice.

    Cyberstalking is a crime. You need to be careful.

    1. Stop doing it.

    2. Do not share details on this or any other public forum. I suspect criminal attorneys would tell you not to talk to anyone about it,

    3. Talk to a criminal law attorney who is familiar with Internet law. I do not have any recommendations.

    4. If you want to look at the laws yourself.

    Stalking is a federal crime (see 18 USC § 2261A – Stalking and 18 USC § 2261 - Interstate domestic violence).

    In Washington there are similar laws against stalking, see RCW 9a.46.110 Stalking and RCW 9.61.260 Cyberstalking and against harassment: see RCW 9A.46.020 Definition — Penalties and Chapter 10.14 RCW Harassment.

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  • Do we have a case for defamation of character and libel?

    Our company has been accused in writing of willful misrepresentation of facts in financial reports with the intent to deceive; one of the principals was accused in the same document of having questionable ethics.

    Gary’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    You may have a case for defamation. As in most areas of law, the answer depends on the specific facts. There is no substitute to actually meeting with an attorney and discussing your case.

    You can sue someone for defamation. Any lawsuit is expensive to pursue. And proving the elements of defamation can be difficult.

    Defamation is a false statement, maliciously or knowingly made to injure someone, usually through ridicule and damage to that person's reputation. Libel is written defamation. Slander is oral defamation.

    Defamation requires:

    1) a false statement concerning another person.

    2) an unprivileged communication to a third party

    3) fault amounting to

    for public officials and figures - actual malice (actual knowledge that the statement is false or reckless disregard for the truth or falseness of the statement)

    for private figures - negligence (what a reasonably prudent person would do, acting under the same or similar circumstances)

    4) damages

    In many cases damages is the hardest part to prove. I can not tell if you have a case or not based on a brief description on this website. If you are still concerned you should talk to an attorney.

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