Publications

Illinois Bar Journal
Articles on Defamation

Qualified defamation privilege applies to statements in condominium assessment lien July 2012 Illinois Law Update, Page 352 On May 17, 2012, the first district appellate court held that statements made in a condominium assessment lien are not absolutely privileged when the condominium association does not enforce the lien by judicial foreclosure.
Narrowing the Illinois anti-SLAPP statute By Adam W. Lasker March 2012 Lawpulse, Page 126 The Illinois Supreme Court reins in a statute designed to stop misuse of defamation lawsuits to silence critics speaking out on matters of public interest.
Protecting anonymous online speakers: Stone v Paddock Publications By Helen W. Gunnarsson January 2012 Lawpulse, Page 10 Plaintiffs seeking pre-suit discovery to unmask the anonymous online posters who allegedly libeled them must first state facts that support a defamation claim, the first district held.
Who Posted That? Anonymous Online Speech and the First Amendment By Sarah A. Smith April 2011 Article, Page 194 There's a trend in defamation litigation to use pre-suit discovery procedures to uncover the identities of anonymous online commenters. The author considers the implications.
Unhappy SLAPPers: more muscle for the Citizen Participation Act By Helen W. Gunnarsson December 2010 Lawpulse, Page 610 The Illinois Supreme Court held that the Act immunized a defamation defendant's statements to a reporter about a developer.
“They’re Bad-Mouthing the Business”: Suing for Defamation and Related Claims on Behalf of a Corporation and its Officers By Joseph J. Siprut October 2010 Article, Page 528 Your business client wants you to respond to lies told by competitors or others. What now? This article reviews the options.
Illinois Interscholastic Association protected from defamation claims. PA 096-0723 June 2010 Illinois Law Update, Page 292 Illinois lawmakers passed a bill protecting Interscholastic Associations from certain civil liabilities. According to the Interscholastic Association Defamation Act, associations with the purpose of "promoting, sponsoring, regulating, or in any manner providing for interscholastic athletics" are immune from defamation claims, with the exception of claims involving actual malice.
Faster resolution urged for custody, SLAPP suits By Helen W. Gunnarsson June 2009 Lawpulse, Page 278 At a recent hearing, the supreme court rules committee was asked to speed disposition of child custody proceedings and SLAPP suits.
In Defense of the Citizen Participation Act By Adam Schwartz March 2009 Column, Page 114 The Illinois Citizen Participation Act of 2007 protects expressive activity in furtherance of efforts to petition the government.
Illinois’ New Anti-SLAPP Statute By Eric M. Madiar and Terrence J. Sheahan December 2008 Article, Page 620 The Act should quell libel suits against those who legitimately petition government for redress. But does it also shield those who intentionally defame others?
Attorney’s defamatory statement privilege applies to preliminary letter to employer March 2007 Illinois Law Update, Page 124 On December 22, 2006, the Illinois Appellate Court, First District, affirmed the Circuit Court of Cook County's dismissal of the claims against the defendant attorney because his allegedly defamatory statements were privileged and made in good faith. 
“Innocent construction” libel rule - still standing but battered By Helen W. Gunnarsson March 2007 Lawpulse, Page 118 The Illinois Supreme Court refused to abandon the rule in Tuite v Corbitt but overturned the trial and appellate courts who applied it in dismissing the plaintiff's case.
Defamation per se of candidate requires more than mean-spirited hyperbole January 2007 Illinois Law Update, Page 14 The Illinois Appellate Court, Fifth District, recently affirmed the decision of the Circuit Court of Madison County, dismissing a defamation action brought by Maag, a judge in a retention election. 
The Illinois Supreme Court and the “Fair Report” Privilege: A Free-Press Victory By Michael M. Conway, Mona G. Thakkar, and Katherine Licup August 2006 Article, Page 414 Reporters who accurately report accusations made as part of a government proceeding are protected from defamation suits.