You may have a claim for defamation, but more information is needed. You should speak with an attorney in your area. You may also look into small claims court given the amount at issue.
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You definitely need to consult with a Nevada attorney who has experience with defamation (slander) cases, particularly given your loss. You will need to document how the loss you quantified is directly related to the slanderous statements. If the loss is related as you state, it will make it easier to prove that other people took the woman's statements of fact rather than non-actionable opinion.
Most defamation lawyers want a $5,000.00 retainer just to begin work on a defamation case, so unless your losses are significant, the costs may exceed the recovery. However, call a local defamation lawyer nonetheless.
As Christian noted, the costs of the attorney and the economist/CPA required to PROVE actual lost income and lost opportunities in court will far exceed $5,000.
Generally, you have to be talking about big numbers (ie. hundreds of thousands or millions) to pique a lawyer's interest in a slander/libel case. Even the most obvious situations of defamation become bitter, nasty cases.
Clark County, Nevada practitioner.
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