What Is the Tort of Slander of Title?
Slander of Title or Slander of Property Is a Civil Law Tort That Involves Realty or An Object and Arises When False Information Is Spread the Property or An Improper Lien or Encumbrance Is Placed Upon the Property So to Stigmatize and Devalue the Property.
Similar Questions About Slander of Title of Property Include:
- What Does Slander of Title Mean?
- If Someone Devalues a House By Spreading False Information Can They Be Sued?
- Can a House Be Slandered?
- What Happens If Someone Spreads a False Rumour About a House?
- What Is Slander of Property?
A Helpful Guide on How to Determine and Understand What Conduct Constitutes As Slander of Title of Property Including Stigma Injury Negatively Affecting the Value of Property
Slander of property, also known as slander of title, involves false information spread about a property, being realty such as a home, or an object such an automobile. Generally, slander of title or slander of property occurs when false statements or improper documents, including documents usual to a legal process such as a lien document or an encumberance, is improperly and maliciously used to cast a stigma upon the subject property thereby making the property less valuable or less saleable. Examples of slander of property can involve the spread of rumours that farmland is polluted, or a house is haunted; Manitoba Free Press Co. v. Nagy, 39 S.C.R. 340 or the registration of a security interest on an automobile; Osman Auction Inc. v. Murray, 1994 CanLII 8911.
The elements of the common law cause of action of slander of title of property are found in Almas, et al, v. Spenceley, 1972 CanLII 609 where it was said by the Court of Appeal for Ontario:
In an action for slander of title the following elements must be proved:
(1) that the defendant published words in disparagement of the plaintiffs' property;
(2) that such words were false;
(3) that such words were published with actual malice;
(4) that the plaintiffs sustained special damages as a result.
A statutory right of action for slander of title of property can also occur, Land Titles Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. L.5, s. 132; Construction Lien Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. C.30, s.35, among others. Unlike the common law cause of action, liability under the statutory right of action may arise without malice or recklessness.