Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

The American GeniusThe American Genius

Social Media

Judge orders Yelp user to edit review, higher court disagrees

In an ongoing battle between a contractor and a displeased client, the courts recently decided a negative review must be edited on Yelp, but a higher court has overturned that decision.

yelp lawsuit

yelp lawsuit

State Supreme Court overturns Judge’s injunction in Yelp case

Jane Perez contracted Dietz Development to do some construction in her townhome, later claiming that damage was done to her home, work wasn’t completed that she was charged for, the contractor trespasses, and that jewelry came up missing during the project. As many consumers do, Perez turned to Yelp and Angie’s List to review the company harshly, for which she is now facing a $750,000 defamation suit, and a Virginia judge recently ordered her to alter her negative Yelp review after the police asserted that her claims did not check out.

Dietz Development alleges that Perez’s Yelp review has cost them new customers, and in addition to the judge’s injunction for Perez to edit the post to remove inaccuracies, the contractor has been granted a hearing next week, and a judge said he would consider another injunction against Perez, potentially limiting her from publishing similar reviews elsewhere.

Fast forward to 2013, and upon hearing of this showdown, Public Citizen and the American Civil Liberties Union filed a joint petition for Virginia’s Supreme Court to review the injunction, which very quickly overturned the Judge’s original injunction against Perez.

Injunction overturned, defamation suit rages on

While Perez’ comments may remain on Yelp as of now, she is still facing the $750,000 defamation suit still under way. Additionally, although the case is being referred to as a Yelp review, it is in reference to Perez’ other reviews online as well, not just Yelp.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

“If plaintiffs think all they have to do to get something shut down about them is run to court and ask for it, a lot more are going to do that,” Paul Allen Levy, a lawyer with Public Citizen, told “It shouldn’t be easy to shut down speech, it should be hard. The win in the Virginia Supreme Court restores that balance. Defamation law is to protect people who are being truly defamed.”

One key takeaway several lawyers have shared with AGBeat is that negative reviews online are not illegal, but users of any review site should be cautious to be accurate and completely truthful in any online review.

Written By

Marti Trewe reports on business and technology news, chasing his passion for helping entrepreneurs and small businesses to stay well informed in the fast paced 140-character world. Marti rarely sleeps and thrives on reader news tips, especially about startups and big moves in leadership.



  1. tobyboyce

    January 5, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    It’s pretty simple in online reviews … you can’t lie and disclose anything that might have skewed your decision either pro or con.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


American Genius
news neatly in your inbox

Subscribe to our mailing list for news sent straight to your email inbox.



The American Genius is a strong news voice in the entrepreneur and tech world, offering meaningful, concise insight into emerging technologies, the digital economy, best practices, and a shifting business culture. We refuse to publish fluff, and our readers rely on us for inspiring action. Copyright © 2005-2022, The American Genius, LLC.