Extortion is a crime that can carry significant prison time. It is possible for either the plaintiff or the defendant in a defamation case to inadvertently commit extortion, so tread carefully.
You should also know when you might be able to press charges against someone for extortion.
Extortion is a crime in which the perpetrator obtains something from the victim through coercion. These are all forms of extortion:
Blackmail is a specific type of extortion that involves threatening to publish harmful information about someone if they don’t meet your demands. In some states, blackmail is prosecuted under extortion laws.
Truth is not a defense against blackmail or extortion: threatening to reveal true information about someone if they don’t meet your demands is a crime.
Extortion and litigation privilege intersect in complicated ways.
Generally speaking, communications made in connection with legal action are subject to litigation privilege. However, litigation privilege may not apply if someone is threatening to use legal action to obtain a concession in an unrelated area.
Probably protected by litigation privilege:
Probably not protected by litigation privilege: