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Ask Buachaill Your Own Question
Buachaill, Barrister
Category: Republic of Ireland Law
Satisfied Customers: 10955
Experience:  Barrister 17 years experience
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My question is about defamation. I was defamed by a person

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Hi my question is about defamation. I was defamed by a person known to me. I read the 2009 act and by the circumstances of this situation they have no defence under honest opinion and the truth. Nor have they offered an apology despite several opportunities to do so. Almost 9 months has passed now and an apology is not forthcoming or likely. As a result I am considering taking legal action on this matter.
The Act states that for it to be defamation it must be spoken to a third party, which it was. However the third party here is the protagonists spouse. I am wondering does the fact that I was defamed to their spouse prevent me from having a chance of success in this case? Or does the third party rule apply to anyone and everyone regardless of their marital relationship? Also in a court situation is their a rule in Ireland that a spouse cannot be forced to testify against their partner?

1. The bot***** *****ne is that you will neither be able to rely upon the evidence of the spouse as to publication, nor will they be likely to give reliable and truthful evidence. So really, a defamation action in these circumstances will probably founder on your inability to be able to prove publication to a third party. So, unless there is some other way in which you can prove publication, I don't forsee success given what you have narrated. A spouse will not be forced to give evidence against their spouse, as spouses are not compellable witnesses. This is before the issue of whether they will give reliable evidence is even considered. So unless you can prove publication to the third party in some other way, you are best off forget about this action for defamation, I regret to say.

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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi thank you for your reply. I now understand the situation more clearly. I have just one question- you say that using this third party spouse is a no-go in regards ***** ***** the defamation took place and any potential case would flounder on this part. However I do have text messages between myself and the protagonist whereby I repeat this same defamation about me (as said to her spouse in my presnce) and in the same text message I request an apology. Would this be sufficient to prove a defamation took place? At no point in the texts do they deny the defamation and nor do they apologise.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi I've rated, could you please answer the supplementary question?

2. A text message you wrote does not prove publication to a third party. The other party had no resposibility to deny the defamation or to give an apology. It is up to you to prove your case.