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Ex Husband defames ex wife in court signed declarations

Morgan Hill, CA |

I divorced my ex after almost 30 years of marriage. He pays me spousal support as part of our divorce settlement. He never wanted me to divorce him & got very vindictive after he found out that I have moved on with my life and I'm happy. He filed a motion accusing me of FRAUD & misrepresenting my income at the time of divorce to get the support reduced. Case is still in court for spousal support litigation. Witnesses and evidence are overwhelming that I have never committed any fraud & that he was fully aware of everything. My question is can I sue him for defamation? He intentionally lied in his signed declarations & falsely accused me of fraud out of spite. All can be proved by evidence & witnesses. He caused me a great deal of stress, emotionally & mentally aside from loss of income

Thank you all for your response. What about stating specific incidents or claiming that he didn't know about specific issues & signing his declaration under penalty of perjury that it is true and correct. Very strong evidence and witnesses proves that he lied & is acting in bad faith. Do I have a course of action against him for committing perjury aside from defamation question earlier? Thank you

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Attorney answers 6


The practice area should really be FAMILY LAW and I will be changing it for you so that the proper attorneys will review your situation and provide you with an answer. Best of luck.

Mr. Crosner is licensed to practice law in California and has been practicing law in California since 1978. The response herein is general legal and business analysis.. It is not intended nor construed to be "legal advice" but rather it is analysis, and different lawyers may analyze this matter differently, especially if there are additional facts not reflected in the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. I am not your attorney until retained by a written retainer agreement signed by both of us. See also terms and conditions item 9, incorporated as if it was reprinted here.


Generally, statements made in court proceedings that are related to the action are protected speech so a defamation suit against your ex-husband will be futile. You should retain a family law attorney who can present evidence on your behalf in family court rebutting any claims of fraud and misrepresentation against you. Good luck.

This information is not intended as legal advice or to create an attorney-client relationship between you and any attorney. Such information is intended for general informational purposes only.


No, you wouldn't have a case for defamation because there is an absolute privilege for remarks made during judicial proceedings, which includes statements made in any pleadings or other papers--such as declarations--filed in the case.

Ms. Berjis is licensed to practice law in the State of California. The laws of your jurisdiction may differ and thus this answer is for informational and educational purposes only and is not to be considered as legal advice. Since all facts are not addressed in the question, this answer could change depending on other significant and important facts. This answer in no way constitutes an attorney-client relationship.


As stated in a previous response, there is litigation privilege that protects parties to litigation from suing each other if the defamation statements were made in the course of court proceeding.

Your only remedy would be to request sanctions against your ex for false statements, prolonging the increasing the cost of litigation under Family Code 271


As prior answers have explained, the litigation privilege allows litigants to say whatever outrageous things they wish in the context of their case.

If, however, the evidence is overwhelming clear that your ex-husband was acting in bad faith and unnecessarily driving up your legal expenses, then you have an action for sanctions (i.e. attorney's fees) pursuant to one or more sections of California law.

Legal disclaimer: The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be anything other than the educated opinion of the author. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change. Attorney is licensed to practice law only in the State of California. Responses are based solely on California law unless stated otherwise.


Perjury is a criminal matter. If you want to report that he made false statements under oath maybe you can get the state or district attorney interested in filing charges. However, this is probably a long shot.