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Real Estate Slander of Title

Slander is generally associated with harm to an individual’s reputation in the community. It can also exist in the context of real estate. The essential elements required to recover on an action for slander of title are that (1) the plaintiff has an interest in the real property, (2) that the words published were false, (3) that the words were maliciously published, and that (4) the plaintiff suffered a monetary loss or injury as a result of the false statement. Kennedy v. Kennedy, 819 S.W.3d 406, 409 (Mo. Ct. App. 1991).

Slander of title cases are rare because it’s difficult to prove all of the elements in a single case by a preponderance of the evidence. Generally, the clearest way to have a case for slander of title is if an individual makes a false, malicious recording with the recorder of deeds about the property. Even then, though, merely having the recording is not enough to make a case. The plaintiff has to prove that monetary losses or injury resulted from the recording.

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