Any person who is the subject of a defamatory publication can To take legal action in a civil case. for To damage another person’s reputation by publishing or communicating false statements about them. The old common law distinction between libel (written and published defamation) and slander (spoken defamation) no longer has any legal significance.. However, section 9 of the Defamation A written law made by parliament. Also called an ‘Act of parliament’, ‘statute’ or legislation. significantly restricts the rights of corporations to sue for defamation. Only certain not-for-profit corporations, and corporations that employ less than 10 employees, can sue for defamation.
It is not necessary for the A person who begins a civil action against another person. (i.e. the person who claims to have been defamed) to be identified by name in the defamatory publication. It is sufficient to show that a reasonable person reading the words understands them as referring to the plaintiff. Claiming that the defamatory Relevant or important. For example, material evidence is something that helps to prove an argument in a criminal case. was not intended to refer to the plaintiff is not a (1) A defendant’s response to the legal claims made against them in court by a prosecutor or plaintiff. (2) A lawful excuse for conduct: for example, causing minor injuries to someone while saving them from certain death. (3) ‘The defence’ is also a way of referring to the defendant and their legal team., nor can it be claimed that the reference to the plaintiff is ambiguous. In one case, two people of the same name successfully sued in relation to the same defamatory publication.
A publication that refers to a group of people (rather than named individuals) only defames members of the group if a reasonable person regards it as referring to every single member of the group. For example, the statement, ‘all lawyers are dishonest’, is not defamatory of any particular lawyer because a reasonable person would not think that the statement means that every single lawyer in Australia is dishonest. On the other hand, the statement, ‘Slow & Bideawhile is a dishonest firm of solicitors’, could well be regarded as meaning that every A legal practitioner (lawyer) who sees clients and opens files to deal with their legal matters but usually does not appear in court. See also barrister. employed by Slow & Bideawhile is dishonest. In that case, each of them could sue.
A government body (e.g. a government department or local council) cannot sue for defamation in relation to a statement that comments on the way it carries out its public functions. However, an individual politician, public servant or local councillor can sue if a statement refers to the way in which they personally carry out public functions.