Becker & Poliakoff

Navigating Defamation Lawsuits and Non-Compete Clauses with Keith Grumer, of Grumer Law

Navigating Defamation Lawsuits and Non-Compete Clauses with Keith Grumer, of Grumer Law

For more episodes of Take It To The Board, click here!

The topic of defamation has become more prevalent as civil discourse has eroded. Unfortunately, sometimes it is the rare board member and/or manager who has not been subject to some form of potential slander or libel throughout their course of community association service.

Host Donna DiMaggio Berger sits down with the highly respected litigator Keith Grumer of Grumer Law, to guide you through the complex legal terrain surrounding defamation as well as the ubiquitous non-compete clauses managers face throughout their careers. With their help, you’ll learn the differences between libel and slander, understand statutory damages in cases of libel and slander per se, and identify crucial communication strategies to avoid potential legal disputes. Donna and Keith also tackle non-compete provisions, providing insights into how these clauses bind both management professionals and the communities they serve.

Donna and Keith talk about the emotional toll board members often face when slander strikes. They examine alternatives to litigation, like the power of an apology. They also outline the critical distinction between opinion and accusation, helping board members discern when it’s time to defend their reputation and when it might be wiser to let cooler heads prevail.

Finally, they dive deep into the psychological battleground of legal disputes, offering practical advice to mitigate the stress and toxicity that often accompany them. Donna and Keith emphasize the importance of maintaining a healthy lifestyle and the power of community support to stay afloat during these trying times. With a thoughtful approach to litigation, they arm you with the tools for a resilient and strategic response to the challenges that come with defending your integrity in the face of adversity.

Conversation Highlights Include:

  • Various forms of defamation
  • Difference between libel and slander
  • How damages in a defamation claim are determined and recovered
  • Defenses to a defamation claim, including board members’ status as limited-purpose public figures
  • Elements of a non-compete clause for community association managers
  • Non-competes under Florida law vs. other states
  • President Biden’s proposed ban on non-competes
  • Advice for potential plaintiffs and defendants
  • Bonus: Find out what the Blue Pencil Rule is!

About Take It To The Board

Think you know what community association life is all about? Think again. Residents must obey the rules, directors must follow the law, and managers must keep it all running smoothly. Take It To The Board explores the reality of life in a condominium, cooperative or homeowners’ association, what’s really involved in serving on its board, and how to maintain that ever-so-delicate balance of being legally compliant and community spirited. Leading community association attorney Donna DiMaggio Berger acknowledges the balancing act without losing her sense of humor as she talks with a variety of association leaders, experts, and vendors about the challenges and benefits of the community association lifestyle.

If you’ve got a question, Take It To The Board with Donna DiMaggio Berger – We Speak Condo & HOA!

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