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Libel case?

Indianapolis, IN |

I was fired from my job for theft, I was told to bring items back and it would be forgotten. I did not steal these items so I went to a store to buy and replace them to keep my job. I was given a quote by my union official from a certain store so I went there with the quote and bought some items and asked if the other items were available. After I left the salesman notified my employer and said that one of the items I bought they did not have, implying that I brought it in just for a receipt. I was fired for this. It is in arbitration right now but doesnt look good. Do I have a case against the store or salesman.

Attorney Answers 3


  1. libel and slander fall under the category of defamation. basically it is saying or writing something that is untrue about a person that causes that person to be damaged. truth is a defense. without knowing more of the facts, it is tough to be certain but it doesn't sound like there is a viable case. furthermore, defamation cases are very expensive to bring and maintain. you need to weigh the thousands of dollars you would need to spend vs the chance of winning. without knowing more, i would vote to preserve your resources and spend the time productively looking for alternative employment. good luck


  2. From the facts you recite I do not see where there is a false statement of material fact, which is what you must prove in order to bring a case for slander. Slander is a false spoken statement. The salesman's statement was true, (they didn'd have one of the items) and truth is an absolute defense to a slander case. You may be able to make a claim on some other theory but no libel or slander. It seems that your mistake was in tacitly admitting that you stole the items by trying to replace them. That does not seem to have been a good tactic. Hopefully the union official will testify at the arbitration that he told you to do so. Good luck.


  3. No. As my colleagues have told you, the salesman did not say anything that was not true. Truth is an absolute defense in defamation actions. We still have freedom of speech in this country.

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