Celebrity News

Judge Orders Richard Simmons to Pay $130K to Tabloids
Download PDF
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (No Ratings Yet)

Richard Simmons. Photo courtesy of Us Weekly.

Summary: A judge told Richard Simmons on Friday that he must pay the legal fees of the tabloids he sued for defamation. 

Richard Simmons is being penalized for suing the National Enquirer and Radar Online. According to Fox News, a Los Angeles judge ordered the flamboyant fitness guru to pay the tabloids $130,000 after losing his defamation case against them last year.


Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Gregory Keosian handed down the decision on Friday. He said that Simmons owed the publication’s publisher attorneys fees of up to $130,000. The defendants originally sought $220,000 in January.

Simmons’ order came from a defamation lawsuit he had filed last year against the National Enquirer and Radar Online. The publications had released a series of reports that Simmons had disappeared from the public eye because he was transitioning into a woman. Simmons said that this was an attack on his character, and he sued.

In the pieces, the National Enquirer and Radar claimed that Simmons had been missing for months because he was getting surgery and that he had told friends to call him “Fiona.”

Get JD Journal in Your Mail

Subscribe to our FREE daily news alerts and get the latest updates on the most happening events in the legal, business, and celebrity world. You also get your daily dose of humor and entertainment!!

In response to the suit, American Media, which owns the tabloids, filed an anti-SLAPP motion to dismiss Simmons’ complaint, and it said that the publications were protected by the First Amendment and that statements that someone is transgender are not harmful to someone’s reputation and therefore not defamation.

In September, Judge Keosian ruled against Simmons, stating that being called transgender was not defamatory. The case was dismissed on September 1, 2017.

“[A]lthough it is true that Simmons would not need to introduce any evidence of reputational damage to proceed in a defamation cause of action seeking only the emotional damages caused by the allegedly defamatory statement, Simmons must be able to show, as a threshold matter, that the allegedly defamatory statement on its face was the type of statement that would ‘naturally tend’ to injure one’s reputation,” Keosian wrote.

“This court finds that because courts have long held that a misidentification of certain immutable characteristics do not naturally tend to injure one’s reputation, even if there is a sizeable portion of the population who hold prejudices against those characteristics, misidentification of a person as transgender is not actionable defamation absent special damages,” Keosian continued.

In Simmons’ lawsuit, his lawyer argued that as a public figure Simmons had a right to not be falsely portrayed. The famed fitness star plans to appeal, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Simmons is represented by attorney Rodney Smolla.

What do you think of Simmons’ case? Let us know in the comments below.


Interesting Legal Sites You May Like




Search Now

Litigation Trial Attorney with 3-5 years of pleading experience


Seattle office of our client seeks litigation trial attorney with 3-5 years of experience. The candi...

Apply Now

Corporate Attorney with mergers and acquisitions experience

USA-CA-Los Angeles

Los Angeles office is seeking a corporate attorney with 1-6 years of M&A, corporate finance, securit...

Apply Now

Estate Planning Attorney with 6+ years of experience

USA-CA-Los Angeles

Los Angeles office is seeking an experienced estate planning attorney with 6+ years of experience. C...

Apply Now

Litigation Associate Attorney

USA-CA-San Diego

San Diego office of our client seeks litigation associate attorney with 4-5 years of experience. The...

Apply Now


Managing Director, Litigation Finance Investments


Title                ...

Apply now

Contract Associate


Seeking lawyer with at least 2 yrs experience in complex real estate transactional matters, with wil...

Apply now



Our Syracuse, NY office seeks an Associate with 3-5 years experience defending general liabilit...

Apply now



INSURANCE DEFENSE / TRANSPORTATION LITIGATION Law firm located in North Houston seeking an associ...

Apply now

Most Popular


To Top