Can You Sue Your Ex-Partner for Defamation During a Divorce?

Going through a divorce with someone you love or once loved is difficult as it is. The whole process can be tough and emotionally draining, especially if you have involved the court or third parties during the process. The last thing you need is to hear that your ex-partner is making defamatory statements against you. They may be doing this out of bitterness just to spite you and make you feel bad. At other times, an ex may also defame you just to make you look like you are the reason for the failed marriage. Whichever their reason is, defamation is not right, especially during such a tough time. You have all the right to sue your ex for saying nasty things about you. However, before you file a lawsuit, you need to ensure the following things:

The statements are untrue

A statement can only be referred to as defamatory is it is false. If you sue your ex for saying things that are true, your lawsuit will not go through, and this can actually cause more distress in the midst of divorce proceedings. So, before claiming that your ex-partner is defaming you, make sure that you can actually prove that the statements are untrue. For example, your partner may go telling friends and family that you are asking for a divorce just so that you can take half of their property. However, if you had signed a prenuptial agreement before the marriage, this can act as a basis for refuting the statements.

Another party heard the statements

You cannot take your ex to court for defamation if the statements that were uttered were exchanged in your presence only. For there to be defamation, another party other than you must have heard the statements. So, if you were in the middle of a private argument and bitter, untrue words were exchanged, you cannot lodge a successful lawsuit. In most instances, the other person or people who heard the statements will be called upon to testify on your behalf. So, without witnesses, your case may not be successful.

Your reputation was hurt

Not all false statements injure someone's reputation, and some can be dismissed as childish and bitter. So, as you go to court, you have to prove that the statements injured your reputation and resulted in emotional distress. For example, if your children start to alienate you as a result of statements made by your ex, this can be grounds for a successful lawsuit.

Defamation is illegal, and it is a great idea to go to court if your ex-partner makes false, damaging statements about you. Talk to a family lawyer so that they can help you build a strong case and gather the necessary evidence.