State of North Dakota


N.D. Century Code, sect. 32-44-02 (1997)
sect. 32-44-02. Civil liability for defamation of agricultural producers

A person who willfully or purposefully disseminates a false and defamatory statement, knowing the statement to be false, regarding an agricultural producer or an agricultural product under circumstances in which the statement may be reasonably expected to be believed and the agricultural producer is damaged as a result, is liable to the agricultural producer for damages and other relief allowed by law in a court of competent jurisdiction, including injunctive relief and compensatory and exemplary damages. If it is found by a court or jury that a person has maliciously disseminated a false and defamatory statement regarding an agricultural product or agricultural producer, the agricultural producer may recover up to three times the actual damages proven and the court must order that the agricultural producer recover costs, disbursements, and actual reasonable attorneys' fees incurred in the action.

HISTORY: SOURCE: S.L. 1997, ch. 288, @ 2.

sect. 32-44-03. Persons entitled to claim for relief

In addition to the provisions of section 32-44-02, if a false and defamatory statement is disseminated referring to an entire group or class of agricultural producers or products, a cause of action arises in favor of each producer of the group or class and any association representing an agricultural producer, regardless of the size of the group or class. Each cause of action by a producer or an association representing an agricultural producer in such case is limited to the actual damages of the producer, injunctive relief, and exemplary damages.

HISTORY: SOURCE: S.L. 1997, ch. 288, @ 3.

sect. 32-44-04. Statute of limitations

Any civil action for damages under this chapter must be commenced within two years from the date of the false and defamatory statement.

HISTORY: SOURCE: S.L. 1997, ch. 288, @ 4.


March 19, 1998