winter injuries - file a personal injury lawsuit?

winter injuries - file a personal injury lawsuit?

Misappropriation Of Identity And Defamation Of Character: Could It Happen To You?

by Franklin Vasquez

Actress Sofia Vergara has made the news recently in an unfortunate way: she's suing the maker of a skin-tightening treatment for using her name and likeness without her permission. While you might think this is something only celebrities have to contend with, the reality is that anyone can end up a victim of someone else's ambitions. An ordinary woman found her high school photo being used on novelty drinking flasks–which was highly distressing to the non-drinking churchgoer. Learn more about misappropriation of identity, defamation of character, and personal injury law.

What is the misappropriation of identity?

Your name, face, and voice are uniquely yours and you have a reasonable right of publicity—or the ability to control their use. When your name, image, or voice are used by someone else for their own purposes, that can damage your interests in a number of ways.

If you are a celebrity, your name and image are generally part of your "brand," which makes the use of any of those things for commercial purposes without your permission a type of economic damage. Celebrities like Bette Midler and Tom Wait, for example, have sued for the mere impersonation of their voices in ad campaigns designed to fool consumers into believing that the celebrities themselves endorsed certain products.

However, just like the woman who found her photo on the liquor flask, ordinary people can also find themselves in a similar situation. For example, a gay couple found their wedding photo being used in an anti-gay political attack ad, much to their distress.

When is defamation involved?

The misappropriation of someone's likeness, name, or voice can also lead to charges of defamation of character, a type of personal injury. Defamation occurs when a false impression is created about the individual and somehow injures their reputation.

Defamation cases usually hinge on the reputation that the individual enjoys in his or her own community and the way in which that reputation was harmed by the publicity. In other words, someone can't sue for a ruined reputation if they didn't have a good reputation at the start. The impression or statements made about the individual must also be represented as facts (not opinion) and have to be false.

For example, singer Courtney Love has twice paid to settle defamation lawsuits against her for statements she's made on social media accusing a clothing designer of being a drug dealer, a thief, and a prostitute. Such claims, when untrue, are generally considered automatically defamatory, simply because of their salacious nature.

If you find that your likeness has been appropriated without your permission or your name is being ruined in your community, talk to an attorney like Terrence Salerno Law Office today about the possibility of suing for damages.


About Me

winter injuries - file a personal injury lawsuit?

You are walking down the sidewalk on a brisk winter day and before you know it, you are clobbered by an avalanche of snow that has fallen from the roof above. Although this may be funny to watch on videos, it is never an experience that anyone wants to endure. Serious injuries are sustained every single winter because of the neglect of property maintenance by business and home owners. My husband was seriously injured by a snow avalanche off of a roof and we were left with no choice but to hire an injury attorney to help us recover his lost wages and enough money to pay for the medical treatments he will need for the next several years. My site contains advice and information that can help you get through the legal process of a personal injury lawsuit.