Actor Rob Lowe and his wife Sheryl have gone to Los Angeles Superior Court to seek damages against their former nanny, Laura Boyce on claims of defamation, intentional infliction of emotional distress, breach of contract and other claims. They are seeking both compensatory and punitive damages. The complaint is linked below.
In a blog on The Huffington Post, Lowe called the case one of “household betrayal.” This theme was picked up in the filing which states that The effect of her betrayal reaches far beyond possibly marring the Lowes’ image in the public eye, but has already caused a tremendous amount of harm to the entire family . . . The Lowes bring this suit to set the record straight and to take a
stand against all those who, by betraying the confidences of those they work for, celebrity or not, seek to capitalize on their positions for their own financial benefit and to the emotional and financial detriment of their employers.”
They accuse Boyce of spreading malicious lies about them and violating their confidentiality contract. The latter may be their strongest claim due to the Lowe’s status as a public figure. As for defamation, he may be able to satisfy the New York Times v. Sullivan standard, but it is a higher standard than the one applied to ordinary people — requiring a showing of actual knowledge or reckless disregard of the truth.
The complaint below is very ambiguous on the specific statements made or the alleged “scheme” that she hatched to harm the family. It describes the nanny’s disappearance and later refusal to respond to call — leading to the alleged discovery of a scheme involving Boyce and presumably others.
For a copy of the complaint, click here.