Libel and Slander
the offences of defamation
Libel and slander are jointly the legal wrong (or tort) of defamation.Defamation is a false statement made by one person about another in order to harm that person’s character and reputation. If spoken, it is slander, and libel if written or broadcast in a permanent form.
To take action for defamation it is necessary to show:
- that the statement would lower the person’s reputation in the eyes of a right thinking person;
- that the statement was communicated to a third party, and that party would be able to identify the person from the statement.
If the defamation is spoken (slander), then the following must also be shown:
- that financial loss has been suffered;
- that you have been accused of committing a criminal offence;
- that your business trade or professional reputation has been damaged;
- that you have been accused of having a contagious disease;
- that you are female and have been accused of immorality.
Before issuing procedures, the laid down protocol should be followed.
Legal Aid is not available to bring defamation proceedings. They can be extremely expensive, and defamation proceedings are really only for the very rich.
Related Blog Posts
Pre-action protocols are contained within the Civil Procedure Rules and set out the steps the court expect parties to take before commencing proceedings for a particular type of claim. The protocols do not have the status of court rules but should be followed whenever...
All parties in a case will be obliged to disclose all documents in their possession which relate and are relevant to the issues in dispute. This includes not only paper documents but also anything in electronic, video or audio form. It is an important obligation which...
Your lawyer will be a professional person and you are entitled to a quality service for the money you are paying. You should be able to expect at the very least the following from him or her: Competence. There will never be a guarantee that your lawyer will win your...