Libel is a false and unprivileged publication, made in writing, or in some other visible form, which exposes the plaintiff to hatred, contempt, or ridicule, or to be shunned, ridiculed, or injured in his/her occupation. California Code of Civil Procedure Section 45.
Libel Is a False Publication Made Orally
Libel is a false and unprivileged publication, orally uttered, which charges the plaintiff with a crime, claims he has an infectious, contagious, or loathsome disease, tends to injure the plaintiff in his/her business or profession,or claims the plaintiff is impotent or unchaste. California Code of Civil Procedure Section 46. Libel is different from slander that applies only to oral statements, whereas slander applies to written statements.
There are many exceptions to and defenses of slander and libel claims. As such, whether you believe you have been defamed, or have been sued for libel or slander, it is critical to seek the counsel of an attorney skilled in this area of the law.