Case Notes by

David Blessington, Associate, Braverman Greenspun

First published: May 2022
Court Dismisses Treasurer’s Defamation Claim Against Board President

While the statements made during a board meeting may be protected by the common-interest privilege to allow for the free flow of information between attendees, evidence of malice or reliance on knowingly false statements or any statements motivated by ill will or spite will not be protected and may expose the individual making such statements to liability. However, because members of co-op and condominium boards are subject to qualified privilege, it is difficult for them to be found liable for defamation. By the same token, it is difficult for them to obtain favorable results in connection with their own defamation claims. See Pusch v. Pullman, 2003 NY Slip Op 51759(U) (N.Y. Sup. Ct. N.Y. Cnty. Nov. 5, 2003) (an action related to the famous Pullman case re board discretion in determining objectionable conduct, 40 W. 67th St. v. Pullman, 100 N.Y.2d 147 (2003)).

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