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I am extremely stressed out and fearful. Is it worth pursuing defamation of character case?

Spring Valley, CA |

African Am. income SSA, held 1yr lease for house all rents paid. Sold in short sale mid lease term. New owner mgr, harassed, taunted to force me out. Police assist on several occasions. Lease ends 3pm and UD filed 4pm, (no 3,30, etc notice given. Refused future rent, sought and granted TRO against manager. Lost in UD case (possession only). Moved on however, Manager sued me $6500 in small claims, judgment in my favor. Bad enough hard to rent new place with eviction on record. Even though I explain circumstance to new prospective landlords. Now threatening via email and calls to have me arrested through bench warrant for not appearing at ordered judgment hearing, which I was never notified. Owner lawyer states call him to resolve in 5 days or he will have sheriff enforce bench warrant.

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Attorney answers 4


You just have too many facts to ferret through over the internet, and I am confused about the TRO, who won at small claims, what the "judgment hearing" was about.. At the very least, call the attorney back and let them know (and put in writing to that attorney) that you were not given notice of any hearing.

I can not tell if you are in Colusa, El Dorado or San Diego county. Regardless, I advise you consult with a legal aid attorney in your area. So long as you are a low-income client, a legal aid agency can help you and is at no cost. Legal aid attorneys are highly trained and experienced in this area of law. Make sure the agency is an actual non-profit LSC-funded agency - if they try and charge you, it is a sham organization.



Thank u for the response. The TRO was against the manager. I won at small claims "he did not satisfy the burden of proof". Have no idea what the judgment hearing was about. Intend to go to SD court to get more info. Fear contacting the attorney as he has been one of the bullies. I am in San Diego County. Thanks again.

Erin Patricia Farley

Erin Patricia Farley


You are very welcome. Yes, go to the courthouse and see what that attorney is referring to. The legal aid contact for your county is: Good luck to you.


Retain a local lawyer to contact this lawyer to work something out with him.

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In order to prove a defamation case you have to show that somone, told another person something false about you, that caused actual damages (not just emotional/psychological). If you can prove these things, you might have a claim for defamation. That being said, I agree with my colleagues that the complexity of your post indicates you should consult face-to-face with an attorney and show him/her the documents supporting these facts. Best of luck.

I am licensed in California, therefore, my answers are based on general prinicpals of law or California law, which may not be applicable in your jurisdiction. Answers posted to Avvo are for general information only. Do not conclusively rely on any information posted online when deciding what to do about your case. Every case depends is fact dependent, and responses are limited to and is based on the information you posted. No attorney-client relationship shall be created through the use reading of this response on Avvo. You should never delay seeking legal advice, disregard legal advice, or commence or discontinue any legal action because of information in this response.


Because your claims against your former landlord all have to do with court proceedings, any action against him would be a SLAPP, or Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation. On top of everything else, you would have to pay his attorney's fees.

Call his attorney and work out a date to go to court.

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