VERIFICATION

I. ______________  [name], am the plaintiff in the above‑entitled action. I have

read the foregoing complaint and know the contents thereof. The same is true of my own knowledge, except as to those matters that are therein alleged on information and belief, and as to those matters. I believe it to be true.

I declare under penalty of perjury under the laws of the State of California that the foregoing is true and correct.

[date].

_ [signature]

[signature ]

COMMENTS

Use of Form

This complaint is for use by a private individual to obtain damages from another private individual for a libelous publication. For a form of complaint for use by a

 

73 LIBEL AND SLANDER Form 3

613]. The requirement that the plaintiff exercise reasonable diligence permits tolling of the statute of limitations only until the plaintiff knows, or through the exercise of reasonable diligence should have discovered, the defendant's identity. Lack of knowledge alone is not sufficient to stay the statute; a plaintiff may not disregard reasonably available avenues of inquiry that, if vigorously pursued, might yield the desired information [Bernson v. Browning‑Ferris Industries (1994) 7 Cal. 4th 926, 936, 30 Cal. Rptr. 2d 440, 873 P.2d 613]. One factor that must be considered pertinent to the diligence inquiry is whether a timely Doe complaint [see Code Civ. Proc. § 474] would, as a practical matter, have facilitated the discovery of the defendant's identity within the three‑year period for service of process under Code Civ. Proc. § 583.210 [Bernson v. Browning‑Ferris Industries (1994) 7 Cal. 4th 926, 936‑937, 30 Cal. Rptr. 2d 440, 873 P.2d 613]. If the identity of at least one defendant is known, the plaintiff must avail himself or herself of the opportunity to file a timely complaint naming Doe defendants and take discovery [Bernson v. Browning‑Ferris Industries (1994) 7 Cal. 4th 926, 937, 30 Cal. Rptr. 2d 440, 873 P.2d 613]. However, if the facts are such that even discovery cannot pierce a defendant's intentional efforts to conceal his or her identity, the plaintiff will not be penalized [Bernson v. Browning‑Ferris Industries (1994) 7 Cal. 4th 926, 937, 30 Cal. Rptr. 2d 440, 873 P.2d 6131.

REFERENCES

Decisions

Equitable estoppel as available to preclude defendant from assert­ing statute of limitations if defendant intentionally concealed identity from plaintiff, who exercised reasonable diligence to determine defendant's identity. Bernson v. Browning‑Ferris Industries (1994) 7 Cal. 4th 926, 928, 936, 30 Cal. Rptr. 2d 440, 873 P.2d 613

FORM N0. 3

Allegation‑Libel on Its Face Based on Imputation of Crime

This [describe type of material ] is libelous on its face

because it charges plaintiff with committing the crime of

[specify crime ].

COMMENTS

Use of Form

The foregoing allegation may be used in place of Paragraph VIII of Form 1 in which the defendant has published material that charges plaintiff with commission of a crime.

(Matthew Bender & Co., Inc.) (Re1.104‑9/94Pub.181)

 

Form 4 LIBEL AND SLANDER  74

REFERENCES

Decisions

Imputing crime to a person as libel per se. Boyich v. Howell (1963) 221 Cal. App. 2d 801, 802‑803, 34 Cal. Rptr. 794 (stuffing ballot box in union election); Draper v. Hellman Com. T. & S. Bank (1928) 203 Cal. 26, 34, 263 P. 240 (fraudulent appropriation of funds); Morris v. National Federation of the Blind (1961) 192 Cal. App. 2d 162, 164, 13 Cal. Rptr. 336 (calling person "ra­cketeer")

Text References

Witkin, Summary of California Law, vol. 5, Torts, § 482 (9th ed. 1988)

FORM NO. 4

Allegation‑Libel on Its Face Based on Injury to Occupation

This [describe type of material] has a tendency to injure the plaintiff in his/her occupation because it

[specify facts that support allegation j.

COMMENTS

Use of Form

The foregoing allegation may be used in place of Paragraph VIII of Form 1 in which the defendant has published material that tends to injure the plaintiff in his or her occupation.

(Text continued on page 75)

(Matthew Bender & Co., Inc.) (Re1.104‑9/94Pub.l81)

 

‑75 LIBEL AND SLANDER

REFERENCES

Decisions

Generally

Publication as libelous per se where allegation is inconsistent. with due fulfillment of what person has undertaken. Maidman vJew­ish Publications, Inc. (1960) 54 Cal2d 643, 650, 7 Cal Rptr 617, 355 P2d 265

Publication as capable of being libelous per se regardless of whether it reflects on office held for profit. or not. Correia v Santos (1961) 191 Cal App2d 844, 855,13 Cal R.Dt.r 132

Specific Occupations

Foreign diplomat. Pridonoff v Balokovich (1951) 36 Cal2d 788, 790, 228 P2d 6

Attorney. Maidman v Jewish Publications. Inc. (1960) 54 Cal2d 643, 651, 7 Cal Rptr 355 P2d 265

Agent in fiduciary relation to principal. Bates v Campbell (1931) 213 Cal 438, 445, 2 P2d 383

Union relationships with business community. Daniels v Sanitarium Ass'n, Inc. (1963) 59 Cal2d 602, 603, 30 Cal Rptr 828, 381 P2d 652

Engineer. Rodriguez v North American Aviation, Inc. (1967) 252 Cal App2d 889, 894, 61 Cal Rptr 579

Businessman. Cameron v Wernick (1967) 251 Cal App2d 890, 894­895, 60 Cal Rptr 102

Administrator of estate. Fairfield v Hagan (1967) 248 Cal App2d 194, 201, 56 Cal Rptr 402

Street pavers. Williams v Daily Review, Inc. (1965) 236 Cal App2d 405, 411, 46 Cal Rptr 135

Teacher and writer. Menefee v Codman (1957) 15,5 Cal App2d 396, 402, 317 P2d 1032, overruled on another ground in Macl.eod v Tribune Pub. Co. (1959) 52 Cal2d 536, 551, 343 P2d 36.

Baseball player. Cepeda v Cowles Magazines and Broadeasting, Inc. (9th Cir Cal 1964) 328 nd 869, 870‑871 cert. denied 379115 844, 85 8 Ct 51, 13 L ed2d 50

Teat References

Witkin, Summary of California Law, (8th ed), Vol. 4, Torts, § 282

6 Cal. Jur. 3d, Assault and Other Wilful Torte, §§ 158‑163

30 Cal. Jur. 2d, Libel and Slander, §§ 105‑107

(Rcl No, 1N‑Nil(,( (('al Fm, PdcD

 

Form 5 LIBEL AND SLANDER 7s

53 CJ.S., Libel and Slander, §§ 32‑52

50 Am. Jur. 2d, Libel and Slander, §§ 102‑124

FORM NO. 5

Allegation‑Libel on Its Face Based on Imputation of Immoral Conduct

This  [describe type of material ] is libelous on

its face because it charges plaintiff with improper and immoral conduct.

COMMENTS

Use of Form

The foregoing allegation may be used in place of Paragraph VIII of Form 1 where the defendant has published material which charges plain­tiff with improper and immoral conduct.

REFERENCES

Decisions

Publication as libelous per se where plaintiff understood to be guilty of improper and immoral conduct. Ervin v Record Pub. Co. (1908) 154 Cal 79, 82, 97 P 21

Text References

53 CJ.S., Libel and Slander, §§ 29, 30

FORM NO. 8

Allegation‑Libel on Its Face Based on Imputation of Dishonesty

This [describe type of material] is libelous on its face because it charges plaintiff with dishonesty.

COMMENT

Use of Form

The foregoing allegation may be used in place of Paragraph VIII of Form 1 where the defendant has published material which charges plain­tiff with dishonesty.

 

77 LIBEL AND SLANDER  Form 7

REFERENCES

Decisions

Publication as libelous per se where person falsely accused of being hypocrite. Newby v Times‑Mirror Co. (1916) 173 Cal 387, 394, 160 P 233

Publication as libelous per se where members of city council im­puted to be dishonest and corrupt. Kramer v Ferguson (1964) 230 Cal App2d 237, 242, 41 Cal Rptr 61

Publication as libelous per se where person falsely accused of being untruthful. Aaelbank v Rony (9th Cir Cal 1960) 277 F2d 314, 318

Text References

53 CJ.S., Libel and Slander, § 18

50 Am. Jur. 2d, Libel and Slander, § 74

FORM NO. 7

Allegation‑Libel on Its Face Based on Imputation of Communism

COMMENTS

Use of Form

The foregoing allegation may be used in place of Paragraph VIII of Form 1 where the defendant has published material which charges plain­tiff with being either a communist or a communist sympathizer.

REFERENCES

Decisions

Publication as libelous per se that labels plaintiff as communist or as communist sympathizer. MacLeod v Tribune Pub. Co. (1959) 52 Cal2d 536, 551, 343 P2d 36; Farr v Bramblett (1955)132 Cal App2d 36, 48, 281 P2d 372, overruled on another ground in Field Research Corp. v Superior Court (1969) 71 Ca12d 110, 114n4, 77 Cal Rptr 243, 453 P2d 747

(Rtl. No. 18‑8/76) (GI Fmi P&P)

 

Form 8 LIBEL AND SLANDER 7R

Text References

6 Cal. Jur. 3d, Assault and Other Wilful Torts, § 157 30 Cal. Jur. 2d, Libel and Slander, § 104 50 Am. Jur. 2d, Libel and Slander, § 77

FORM NO. 8

Allegation‑Libel on Its Face Based on Exposing Plaintiff to Contempt and Ridicule

This [describe type of material ] is libelous on its face because it subjects the plaintiff to contempt and ridicule.

COMMENTS

Use of Form

The foregoing allegation may be used in place of Paragraph VIII of Form 1 where the defendant has published material which subjects plaintiff to contempt and ridicule.

EEYERENCF$

Decisions

Publication as libelous per se where sign said "Nuts to You‑You Old Witch" since it exposed plaintiffs to contempt and ridicule. Megarry v Norton (1955) 137 Cal App2d 581, 582‑583, 290 P2d 571

Text References

Witkin, Summary of California Law (8th ed), Torts, § 283

50 Am. Jur. 2d, Li be 1 and Slander, §§ 71‑95

FORM NO. 9

Allegation‑Libel on Its Face Based on Imputing Lack of Chastity to Woman

This (describe type of material] is libelous on its face because it imputes a lack of chastity to the plaintiff.

 defamation complaint

Cal Forms of Pleading and practice vol 30 chs 340-347