In addition to the safeguards and privileges that the courts have established throughout the years to balance the right of individuals to be free from defamatory statements against the rights guaranteed by the First Amendment, the Florida Legislature has also provided certain requirements plaintiffs must meet in order to bring a defamation suit against a media defendant.
Under §770.01, Florida Statutes, a prospective plaintiff is required to give a media defendant written notice five (5) days before initiating a civil action. The notice must specify the alleged false and defamatory statements contained in the article or broadcast. Additionally, § 770.02, Florida Statutes
limits the amount of damages a plaintiff may recover from a media defendant where: the article or broadcast was published in good faith; its falsity was due to an honest mistake of facts; there were reasonable grounds for believing the statements were true; and a full and fair correction, apology, or retraction was published or broadcast within a specific time period.