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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
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How can I go about reporting someone -going verbal abuse

Resolved Question:

How can I go about reporting someone for on-going verbal abuse (slander) to myself, family and, more importantly my 10yr old daughter? (More details are available if I can speak to someone.) Miss Robinson.
Submitted: 12 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 12 months ago.

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today. Can you please briefly explain the nature of the abuse?

Customer: replied 12 months ago.
I wrote a very detailed responce but happened to delete it with my phone dying. It is verbal abuse towatds myself and my 10 year old daughter, from a lady (34 of age, I believe, that has constantly sworn and abused my daughter on passing with horrible remarks. I need to explain more detail with this matter, esp as her new boyfriend is involved, and he's a class B substances user daily, esp with the fact it has now resorted to her maliciously and annonymously calling social services on myself. ( within 25 hours and no need of more than phone call contact I was discharged from them due to nothing being of truth or relevance.) My daughter has panick attacks since this abuse and I have also had the school on the phone regarding the safety of this woman's children in her house with her boyfriend present. He has a criminal record of physical abuse against his own girlfriend and her property with the children inside that makes us wander the safety of them. I work full time within the public sector and could loose my job if this slander continues. Physically I have spoke to this woman to ask for them and the kids to stay away from my child and stop sagging me off. They have no evidence, just a bitter vendetta against me, from her to me, due to me stopping our friendship 5 years ago as she used me to babysit for her kids to go out and do drugs herself (only recently found out) used me for money and taxi lifts in my car and also tried to sexually malest 2 male friends of mine, stating rape when they said NO. By nothing was reported by her to police at those times, or thereafter. It's got too far to take lightly now as I have another child of 17.5months and do not appreciate constant slander in a small community when I am very well respected and admired. Help please. More detail available but I feel I have already paid my bill for this and more. Thanks. Miss robinson.
Customer: replied 12 months ago.
If you can't reply I will refund my money if possible and try elsewhere. Thank you. Miss Amia Robinson.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 12 months ago.

Hi, sorry I was offline by the time you had replied last night. Have the police been contacted about this?

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
No. I haven't spoken to the police regarding any of this yet as I wasn't sure if they could get involved with slander things like this or if it was deemed a domestic case.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

Well they may not get involved with slander cases, as that is a civil issue, but that is not necessarily going to be just slander.

Whilst this may appear to be a potential case of defamation (this includes libel if it is in written form, or slander if it is in oral form), such claims are extremely difficult to pursue. Many people are intent on suing for defamation without having any appreciation of the law behind them,

So it may be easy to prove that defamation has occurred, but the legal process of pursuing such a claim is extremely complex and expensive. As this goes through the High Court, you would need the professional help of specialist defamation solicitors and the costs are undoubtedly going to run into the thousands right at the outset. Also there is no legal aid available for such claims so the complainant must fund these personally. So when you hear about defamation claims being made, these are usually pursued by big corporations or celebrities who have a public image to protect.

There is of course nothing stopping you from contacting the other party and threatening them that what they have done amounts to defamation and that you will consider pursuing the matter further if they do not retract their statement. This could prompt them to reconsider their position, but I would not recommend that you actually proceed with a claim for defamation due to the issues highlighted above.

The other option is to treat this as harassment and that is where it can also amount to a criminal matter.

This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the law on harassment and how you can apply it here, which I wish to discuss so please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far (by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars) and I can continue with that and answer any further questions you may have. Don’t worry, there is no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you

Ben Jones and 4 other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

Hello, I see you have read my response to your query. Please let me know if this has answered your original question and if you need me to discuss the next steps in more detail? In the meantime please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts from the top of the page. The question will not close and I can continue with my advice as discussed. Thank you

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
thank you Ben. I have read ur comments over and over again. Today I made the desicion to call Derbyshire social services on this woman as she yet again abused my daughter and her friend today by sticking up her middle finger in her face and 'waving them away' like a bad smell. She is already reported to social services and so I don't feel that they can ignore this anymore. I hope I haven't been charged more than one payment of £38 for all of this. I do find your words helpful and comforting as I always try to do the best for my children's safety and others when in my care. I just feel that verbal slander between families is not the way to go like she insists on doing so. She'd rather slander to the 10 year children rather than talk to me and other parents regarding issues. If things continue and no relevant feedback comes back from the social services, is there any such thing as getting a signed letter from someone like you to outline that they cannot keep continuing this sharade warning them that if they do I will take further action. Maybe 1 letter signed professionally by you, for example, will scare them off as well as the social services so this all ends and by the book.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

Hi there, first in relation to payments I have no access to your account so for any payment or accounts issues please contact *****@******.***.

In terms of sending a letter, we are only a Q&A site, meaning we only deal with you through here – we cannot engage you formally as a client and send letters on your behalf – you need to engage a solicitor personally for that and in person, but obviously the costs will be higher if you do so. There is nothing stopping you from doing this yourself though and quoting the law.

As mentioned this could also amount to harassment, which could be both a civil matter and a criminal one. The law states that a person must not pursue a course of conduct which amounts to harassment of another and which he or she knows or ought to know amounts to harassment. Although there is no definition of what specifically amounts to harassment, it would usually include alarming a person or causing them distress and must have occurred on at least two occasions.

Under criminal law, and if this is reported to the police who then take action, the punishment for harassment can be imprisonment and/or a fine. A court may also impose a restraining order for the purpose of protecting the victim.

In addition to criminal action, a civil claim can also be brought against a person who is alleged to be guilty of causing harassment. The courts would award compensation to the victim, something that is unlikely to happen if this is pursued as a criminal issue.

So in the first instance the police can be contacted and this matter reported to them as harassment. However, they will not often get involved in trivial disputes so if they believe that this is not serious enough they could refuse to help and advise you that this is a civil matter. In such circumstances, the victim can warn the harasser that their actions are being treated as harassment and that unless they refrain from such behaviour in the future they will be reported to the police and legal action under harassment legislation taken against them.