What Are the Stages of a Defamation Case?

In case, you want to file a defamation claim, it’s important for you to know how much time the entire case takes. This guide will brief you details about defamation case stages and the time required in its completion.

Finalizing an Attorney

Defamation lawsuit is not common man’s cup of tea. It is important that before filing the case, you choose a professional lawyer. Before finalizing any attorney for your case, discuss your case with several lawyers in person or over the call.

It is worth mentioning here that it is not easy to find professional defamation case lawyers everywhere. Henceforth, if you’re unable to find a defamation attorney in your area, try searching for an attorney who’s a professional litigator and has good success record in past. Moreover, try hiring an attorney who’s ready to fight your case on recovery percentage/contingency fee basis.

Stages of a Defamation Case

As a general rule, you should enquire personal injury attorneys for defamation case since such attorneys take cases on recovery percentage/contingency fee basis. However, make sure that the chosen personal injury lawyer has knowledge of defamation removal law. Recently, when attorney Aaron Minc interviewed Cleveland News 5he had mentioned some of the ways to avoid defamation lawsuits. You can also take consultation from one such lawyer for your defamation removal case.

Case Investigation

Once you finalize an attorney for your case, firstly he/she will interview you about the case. Following are few things that your attorney would like to know:

  • Exactly what did the defendant write or say about you?
  • What all are your damages?
  • Do you have any proof of damage?
  • Who will be witnesses from your side?
  • How did you come to know what defendant said about you?

If your case is of written defamation, the attorney may ask you for a copy of what the litigant wrote about you. A good lawyer will ensure that he/she has complete information of the case. After that, the attorney may be willing to discuss the case with you, your witnesses or investigators etc.

After complete investigation, the attorney will share his/her opinion about your case. In case the attorney finds your case to be viable for defamation, the lawsuit will be filed. At times, attorneys identify at the discussion stage only that your case is not viable for defamation claim.

Negotiation Process

Usually, defamation cases get settled before filing a lawsuit. In case your attorney feels that there’re chances of settlement without filing a case, he/she will do it. In that case, your attorney will send a formal letter to the other party. On the contrary, if there’s no scope of out-of-court settlement, your attorney will file a case.

Case Is Filed

After a case is filed and response is received from the defendant, the judge releases a scheduling order. This scheduling order has a timeline for the remaining legal action. Moreover, scheduling order will have a deadline for discovery completion.


Hope this guide will help you to understand the stages of a defamation case.

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