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The defamation cease and desist letter is sent due to false or erroneous claims that result in the defamation of character in an individual or business entity. The letter should outline the specific statements that were made and how they are affecting the reputation of the person or business. Furthermore, a full retraction of the statements should be requested. If there is no response by the other party or a retraction of the statements is rejected, the harmed party should seek full damages for the falsehoods made.
Federal Definition (28 U.S. Code § 4101(1))
Source: South African Law Reports, The (1947 to date)/CHRONOLOGICAL LISTING OF CASES – January 1947 to April 2019/1960/Volume 2: 467 852 (June)/BESTER v VAN NIEKERK 1960 (2) SA 779 (A) URL: BESTER v VAN NIEKERK 1960 (2) SA 779 (A) 1960 (2) SA p779 Citation 1960 (2) SA 779 (A) Court Appellate Division Judge Schreiner JA, Beyers JA, Malan AJA, Botha AJA and Holmes AJA Heard March 18, 1960. Melania: free download. On-line books store on Z-Library Z-Library. Download books for free.
Melania and Me is a book by the American business executive Stephanie Winston Wolkoff about her time spent working for and her friendship with Melania Trump, the then-First Lady of the United States.It was published on September 1, 2020 by Gallery Books. Wolkoff's memoir details her friendship of 15 years with Trump that ended with her being fired after damaging publicity about the finances.
The term “defamation” means any action or other proceeding for defamation, libel, slander, or similar claim alleging that forms of speech are false, have caused damage to reputation or emotional distress, have presented any person in a false light, or have resulted in criticism, dishonor, or condemnation of any person.
- Types of Defamation
- How to File a Defamation Lawsuit
There are two (2) types of defamation:
- Per Quod – Plaintiff can prove actual damages. For example, if a speaker has a stadium sold out and, after false statements are made, the ticket-holders begin to demand refunds. The plaintiff would be able to show actual damages to the comments that were made.
- Per Se – The damages are so widespread that the plaintiff cannot prove actual damages. This is the most common and is broken down further into four (4) subcategories:
- Criminal conduct – Claiming someone was convicted of a crime or labeling them as a criminal.
- Business or Profession – Harming the reputation of a business.
- Lonesome Disease – For example, claiming an individual has an STD.
- Imputation of Unchastity – Unjust sexual behavior such as claiming adultery.
Libel is false statements made in writing such as newspapers, magazine, tabloid, website, or any other open platform.
Slander is false statements made verbally on radio, television, online, or any public venue.
Filing a defamation lawsuit requires the harmed party to prove any statements, accusations, or publications that have been made were false or severely inaccurate to the point where damages were incurred. Whether the damages need to proven will be up to the court.
Step 1 – Gather the False Statements
Collect any and all evidence of the false statements made. If by radio, podcast, television, or other online formats, be sure to record the publications by screenshots and submitting to archive.org/web/ to make a verified third (3rd) party citation. It’s important to gather as much evidence as possible before any notice has been sent to the defendant in case it’s taken down at a later time.
Step 2 – Show the Statement is Inaccurate
The plaintiff will need to represent that the claim is false. This should be a simple task as, for example, if the defendant makes the claim that the plaintiff is a drug dealer, public records will show that the plaintiff has never been convicted of any related crime.
Step 3 – Write the Cease and Desist Letter
Use the Instructions (How to Write) and depending on the plaintiff’s claims, the defendant will be required to stop making specified statements as well as may be asked to retract the claims that were made. At the sole decision of the plaintiff, if they feel a public retraction of the statements made is enough, then that will be the end of the matter.
Although, the letter may serve as a prelude to a lawsuit with only requesting the defendant cease making further statements until a court hearing date.
Step 4 – Claiming Damages
Before a civil complaint is filed, which is a document filed to begin a lawsuit, damages to the plaintiff should be estimated. In most cases, a monetary value cannot be directly attributed to the statements that were made. Therefore, it’s important to lookup other related cases and judgments to see what other related parties were awarded for such defamation claims.
Example #1 – Melania Trump vs DailyMail
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In 2016 there was a story published by the DailyMail that inaccurately made the claim Melania Trump was an escort in the early 1990s. These claims were refuted and she filed a defamation lawsuit totaling $150 million in damages. The DailyMail submitted a retraction and apologized while agreeing to pay $3 million.
Example #2 – Andy Crews, Dick Anagnost, and William Greiner vs Michael Gill
In 2017, a New Hampshire billboard owner began running false statements next to a busy highway defaming three (3) prominent businessman and their companies in Manchester, New Hampshire. The statements on the billboard included “drug dealer”, “extortion”, along with similar references. Due to the large presence the billboard had in the market area, in court awarded the three (3) men a $274 million judgment.
Step 5 – Prepare and File the Lawsuit
Once the case is prepared, mainly gathering evidence of defamation and calculating the damages caused, the plaintiff is ready to file their defamation lawsuit complaint in the court of proper jurisdiction. The attorney will most likely take it from here and there may be a notice period, depending on the State, when the defendant must be notified before officially filing in the district court.
- AL – § 13A-11-163
- AK – AS 21.36.070
- AZ – ARS 20-445
- AR – 660 S.W.2d 933
- CA – CIV 46
- CO – 882 P.2d 1293
- CT – DeVito v. Schwartz et al.
- DE – 261 A.2d 529
- FL – § 836.04, 997 So.2d 1098
- GA – § 51-5-1, 573 S.E.2d 376
- HI – 962 P.2d 353
- ID – § 18-4801, 943 F. Supp. 2d 1125
- IL – 34 N.E.3d 549
- IN – 750 N.E.2d 433
- IA – 380 F. Supp. 2d 1002, 512 N.W.2d 777
- KS – § 21-6103, § 40-2404(3)
- KY – § 432.280, 151 S.W.3d 781
- LA – RS 14:47
- ME – 672 A.2d 82
- MD – 935 A.2d 719
- MA – MGL c.272 § 98C & c.176D § 3(3)
- MI – MCL § 600.2911 & 750.370
- MN – MS 609.765, 766 N.W.2d 910
- MS – § 97-3-55 & 97-3-57, § 95 Ch. 1
- MO – MO Rev Stat § 537.110 & 509.210
- MT – § 45-8-212, § 27-1-802 & 27-1-803
- NE – RS Ch. 25 § 208, 839, 840 & 840.01
- NV – NRS 200.510(1), 57 P.3d 82
- NH – RSA 644:1 & 507-A, 106 N.H. 26
- NJ – 116 N.J. 739
- NM –§ 30-11-1 & 41-7-1 7 – 41-7-6
- NY – CVR § 74 – 78, 75 N.E.2d 257
- NC – GS § 99-1 – 99-5, 442 S.E.2d 572
- ND – § 12.1-15-01 & § 14-02-01 – 14-02-11
- OH – § 2739.01 – 2739.99, Murray v. Knight-Ridder, Inc.
- OK – § 21-771 – 21-781, § 12-1441 & 12-1442
- OR – § 31.200 – 31.230, 244 Or. 267
- PA – § 8343, 544 Pa. 117
- RI – 555 A.2d 321
- SC – SC Code § 16-7-150, 271 S.C. 276
- SD – SDCL § 20-11-3 & 20-11-4
- TN – 172 S.W.2d 13, 83 S.W.3d 125
- TX – § 59.002, § 119.201, § 122.251
- UT – § 76-9-404, § 45-2-2
- VT – Cooper v. Myer
- VA – § 18.2-417, § 8.01-247.1
- WA – 225 P.3d 339
- WV – WVC § 57-2-4 & 21-3E-13
- WI – § 942.01, Defamation Law of Wisconsin
- WY – WS § 1-29-101 – 1-29-106
Step 1 – Download in Adobe PDF, Microsoft Word, or Open Document Text (.odt).
Step 2 – The first four lines should be completed with the name and address of the sender and the date the letter is being written.
Step 3 – The addressee’s name must be entered followed by the individual whose name is being slandered.
Step 4 – The name of the State in which the defamed individual resides shall be supplied followed by a written example of the defamatory statements which prompted the letter.
Step 5 – The number of days the recipient has to reply must be specified.
Step 6 – The representative of the slandered party must sign their name to complete the letter.
|Senior Advisor to the First Lady|
2017 – February 26, 2018
|First Lady||Melania Trump|
1970 (age 50–51):¶28
|Relatives||Randall Batinkoff (brother)|
Harry Winston (grandfather)
|Alma mater||Loyola University New Orleans (B.A.)|
Stephanie Winston Wolkoff (née Batinkoff) is an American fashion and entertainment executive and former senior advisor to the first lady Melania Trump. Before her controversial role in politics, she produced various notable events in New York City, including the Met Gala, and later worked as the founding fashion director for Lincoln Center and facilitated the expansion of its Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week.
Wolkoff was born to parents Barbara (née Carnel ) and Barry Batinkoff and raised in the Catskills. Her family is Jewish. Wolkoff is the sister of actor Randall Batinkoff. She attended Fordham University, where she played NCAA Division I basketball as a power forward for two years. She then transferred to Loyola University New Orleans where she graduated with a degree in Communications.
Her first job was as a lobbyist for Sotheby's, and she later worked as an assistant to New York concert promoter Ron Delsener. In 1996, Wolkoff started working for Vogue as a public relations manager, where she helped organize events such as the VH1 Fashion Awards and the Met Gala. After briefly resigning in 2010, she was rehired by Anna Wintour, who installed Wolkoff as fashion director for New York Fashion Week. She met Melania Knauss, then Donald Trump's girlfriend, in 2003 while working for Vogue, and the two became friends. She attended the Trump wedding and Melania's baby shower, and they lunched together regularly. She says Melania was like 'the sister I never had before'.
Role in the Trump administration
In 2016, Wolkoff created an event planning firm, WIS Media Partners, which was instrumental in organizing the Inauguration of Donald Trump in January 2017. Wolkoff's firm was paid $26 million for their services – about one-quarter of the total expenses of the inauguration. According to a tax filing, most of the money went to other vendors and a dozen staff members.
In the early 21st century, Wolkoff was named an unpaid senior advisor to first lady Melania Trump. Melania Trump cut ties with Wolkoff on February 26, 2018. Wolkoff resigned that month, after the extent of her firm's compensation for organizing the inaugural festivities was reported. She says she was 'scapegoated' and that only $1.6 million of the $26 million went to her personally.
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In 2020, Wolkoff published a book, Melania and Me, described as a 'tell-all' about her tragic experiences in the White House with Donald Trump and Melania Trump. The book contains extensive direct quotes from Melania Trump; when asked how that was possible, Wolkoff explained that after her relations with the first lady soured, she began recording conversations. The Trump Justice Department filed a civil suit against Wolkoff in October 2019, alleging breach of a nondisclosure agreement, which the Biden Justice Department dropped in February 2021.
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After her parents' divorce, she was adopted at age 26 by her mother's second husband, Bruce Winston, the son of jeweler Harry Winston. Wolkoff met her husband, real estate developer David Wolkoff, in 1996 and they married in March 2000. They have three children.
- Melania and Me (2020)
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- ^Kevin Liptak and Dan Merica. 'WH cuts ties with Melania Trump aide after inauguration contract controversy'. CNN. Retrieved 2020-10-02.CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
- ^Zornosa, Laura (September 3, 2020). ''A Trump is a Trump is a Trump': What a severed friendship says about the inauguration'. The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 5 September 2020.
- ^'Biden Admin DOJ Drops Lawsuit Against Melania Trump's Ex-Friend Stephanie Winston Wolkoff'. February 9, 2021.
- ^Brady, Lois Smith (March 26, 2000). 'Weddings: Vows; Stephanie Winston, David Wolkoff'. The New York Times. Retrieved 5 September 2020.