How are lawsuits determined if someone posts about a bad experience and the business in question covers its tracks?

Asked almost 2 years ago - Palo Alto, CA

If a business lies and manipulates customers verbally especially through tools that they can easily delete or deny (like web pages with fake customers, fake testimonials, one-time expiring offers/events that actually aren't, etc.), should I be worried to expose them? Somewhat similar, but more complicated than your everyday "he said, she said" situation, how are issues like this resolved when the court is involved?

Attorney answers (6)

  1. Andrew Daniel Myers

    Contributor Level 20

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    Answered . Civil actions are based upon actual damages causally related to wrongful conduct.

    The attorneys general have consumer affairs division that take reports on misleading and deceptive advertising. Unless you have any actual damages, the courts determine such lawsuits by dismissing them.

    Here's more, blue link below:

    Law Offices of Andrew D. Myers, North Andover, MA & Derry, NH provide answers for informational purposes only.... more
  2. Logan Lambert Quirk

    Contributor Level 10

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    Answered . I agree with the above answer. In your particular circumstance, do you have a specific complaint or were you damaged somehow?

    The above is not intended to be legal advice, but rather analysis. The proffered advice is not intended to create... more
  3. James Lawrence Magazine

    Contributor Level 16

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    Answered . They are determined by damages caused as a result from the incident which the lawsuit is filed.

    Jim Magazine

  4. Paul J Molinaro

    Pro

    Contributor Level 17

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    Answered . When a client asks me what happens when the other side lies really well, I often explain what happens this way... There are two kinds of truths in the eyes of the law... what really happened and what the jury believes happened.

    Each side presents its evidence to the jury and then the jury has to decide which side is the correct, i.e. truthful, one. Really good liars who manufacture evidence may get the jury to believe them... not the answer that good moral people want to hear, but that's the way it is... lawyers are trained to operate in this field and make the best of it.

    - Paul

    Paul J. Molinaro, M.D., J.D.
    Attorney at Law, Physician, Broker
    Fransen&Molinaro;, LLP
    980 Montecito Drive, Suite 206
    Corona, CA 92879
    (951)520-9684
    www.fransenandmolinaro.com / www.888MDJDLAW.com
    "When you need a Lawyer, call the Doctor"

    ** This post and all others I make on Internet are for informational purposes only. None of the information or materials I post are legal advice. Nothing I post as comments, answers, or other communications should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing of this information does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. While I try to be accurate, I do not guarantee accuracy.

    Paul J. Molinaro, M.D., J.D. Attorney at Law, Physician, Broker Fransen&Molinaro;... more
  5. Lisa Jean Borodkin

    Contributor Level 7

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    Answered . A few government agencies handle these kinds of complaints. You can contact your state's Attorney General's Office or the Federal Trade Commission's Bureau of Consumer Protection to lodge a complaint.

    In addition, if you intend to enforce your rights through your own attorney in the private court system (whether small claims court or elsewhere) and you have a concern about preserving evidence, you have a few options. You can take screen shots from your computer (on a Mac OS it is command-shift-4; on a Windows machine the PrtScn key copies the visible window to a clipboard) and save them to a local drive or to a cloud storage service like DropBox. You can also print out pages for your file.

    There are a number of web-based products designed to help empower consumers. Yelp.com is a ratings and review site. GetSatisfaction.com facilitates the interface between consumers and businesses. Chee.rs allows you to use your real social networking graph to spread the word about good businesses that people should want to support. (There is a counterpart called Gri.pe as well.)

    A very underrated option, in my humble opinion, when the business is not responding to your reasonable requests for fair treatment is to get the media involved. When writing a complaint letter or email, do not hesitate to copy your local reporter or press organization.

    As long as what you are saying is true, you should have no worries. Good luck.

    This information is for educational use only.
  6. Bennet Gerard Kelley

    Pro

    Contributor Level 4

    Answered . It is hard to cover your tracks in today's cyber world. The real question is, as the other lawyers commented, about how you are harmed and the amount of harm. That will dictate your course of action.

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