As we first reported, a lawyer for the Salahis emailed the cast of "Real Housewives" ... threatening to sue if any of them use the "defamatory" phrase -- because, according to their lawyer, they technically never crashed the dinner.
Mark Lane, a lawyer for cast member Lynda Erkiletian, tells TMZ the Salahis could clear this whole thing up by just showing off the invitation. Lane says, "After eight months of exhausting the taxpayer's money investigating this issue, she could save everyone's time and money by just producing the invitation."
Lane says Erkiletian plans on using the phrase just the same, but with one concession -- she'll throw the term "alleged" in front of it ... complete with air quotes.
Everyone knows air quotes are an airtight legal defense -- right up there with crossing your fingers or calling "no backsies."