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Courtney Love Libels Her Ex-Lawyer on Twitter

By Cynthia Hsu, Esq. on May 27, 2011 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

For the second time, a Courtney Love Twitter defamation case is making waves. Ex-lawyer Rhonda Holmes alleges that the latest Courtney Love's libel tweets have hurt her professional reputation and have caused her economic injury.

Holmes, a San Diego attorney, was originally retained as counsel for Love in a lawsuit where she was trying to pursue money stolen from the estate of Kurt Cobain, reports The Hollywood Reporter.

Love had fired Holmes' firm (Gordon & Holmes) after they had only agreed to represent Love in the legal action if she could remain sober the entire time. When she tried to re-hire them, they declined, according to The Hollywood Reporter. And so began the alleged Twitter defamation.

Likely unhappy with the rebuff she got from her former attorneys, Love tweeted "I was f****** devastated when Rhonda J Holmes Esq of San Diego was bought off." In a separate interview, Love had also stated that Holmes "disappeared" and couldn't be contacted since someone "got to her" and told her not to represent Love.

This Twitter defamation lawsuit is the second Twitter lawsuit for Love - she just recently settled for $430,000 on allegations that she defamed a fashion designer through a tweet.

The basics of defamation law, or libel (written defamation), is nuanced. It requires that plaintiffs must show that a statement was made, the statement was published, the statement then caused injury, and that it was a false statement. Also, the statement must not be "privileged" - such as a testimony at trial.

In Love's case, a Twitter post is most likely to be deemed a publication. And, Gordon & Holmes is claiming that they suffered injury, because their reputation and their business were subsequently hit after Love tweeted the post that suggested they had been bribed. And, the statement must be false - if what Love said is true, there was no defamation.

The Courtney Love Twitter cases keep coming, fast and furious. For Courtney Love, libel and Twitter seem to be two things that she mixes all-too often in those 140 character tweets.

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