Defamation is when an individual makes a false or misleading statement about another person that harms their reputation. When the statement is made orally, that is called slander. When it is in written form, that is called libel. There are certain categories of statements such as impugning someone’s business reputation, or falsely claiming that someone has a disease, which is considered defamation per se, in which the court will award damages automatically. In other instances, you will need to prove that there was actual damage or harm to your reputation in order to recover.