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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 60581
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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I was wondering how defamation claims work Assistant: Where

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Hi i was wondering how defamation claims work
Assistant: Where is this? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: Armthorpe doncaster
Assistant: What steps have been taken so far?
Customer: Nothing. Somebody has wrote a statement about me on facebook. Claiming about sexual misconduct
Assistant: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: Previously had the police involved due to this statement. But was thrown out of court because there wasnt enough evidence. But the accusation made is false. And its been put all over facebook and the story has been conpletely made up and fabricated

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today.

Please explain the situation in some detail

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
just before my wedding day on tue 20th august i was questioned by the police. I was told that my 5 year old niece made an accusation. The accusation was that i got naked in front of my niece on a few occasions and also made her touch my boobies twice...
Obviously none of this is true. Previous to this me and my partner fell out with all of his side of family due to them interfering with the wedding and just trying to cause problems all the time with there lies.
After we fell out i had no contact with them. This was in april.
Going back to the statement the police found unsuficient evidence in the story by my niece as she kept changing her story.
Since the mother found out that no further action would be taken. She plastered it on facebook fabricating the story more and naming me.
Since i was 1st accused its absolutely broken me. I am really struggling with it all. Iv now got anxiety about going out. I have took days off work due to it all. I just want this to stop. It is not true and im having people message me about it too.

Thank you. I will get back to you with my answer as soon as I can, which will be at some point today. The system will notify you when this happens. Please do not reply in the meantime as this may unnecessarily delay my response. Many thanks.

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 rather difficult to pursue. Many people are keen on suing for defamation without having full appreciation of the law or practicalities in doing so. I will try and clarify the position below.

First of all, certain conditions must be met for the statement to be classified as defamatory. These are:

1. There has to be a defamatory statement - the assessment that is often used to establish this is whether the statement tends to lower the claimant in the estimation of right-thinking members of society generally

2. Its publication has caused or is likely to cause serious harm to the reputation of the claimant – this will vary based on what effect it will have but it really has to be something sufficiently serious

3. The statement has been published by the defendant to a third party

4. The claimant must prove that the words complained of were published about him - this should not be an issue if the claimant is named or clearly identified.

Whilst it may be easy to prove that defamation has taken place, the legal process of pursuing such a claim is often complex and prohibitively expensive. A claim must be made in the High Court and will likely require the help of professional defamation lawyers, so the costs will often be high right from the outset, usually in the thousands. There is also no legal aid available for such claims so the complainant must fund these personally.

You must also consider whether the publisher of the statement can potentially defend the claim. For example, this can happen by proving the statement was true or an honest opinion which could have been made based on the available facts.

Instead of starting legal proceedings it would be best to contact the publisher of the comment, advise 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 and issue an apology. This could prompt them to reconsider their position, which would avoid the need for court action. Of course, if they refuse to comply the option of suing still exists, but consider the above information before going down that route.

An alternative is to argue that this is harassment, as long as it has occurred on more than one occasion and that is something which can be reported to the police or you can pursue it in the civil courts as well.

Does this answer your query?

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
I do not have the money to do this. So does that mean without money there's nothing i can do

You do not need lawyers to make a claim but you could soon find yourself overwhelmed with the complexity of it. Also a harassment claim is not as complex as a defamation one. Lastly, the police are free of course and also you can just spend money on a formal letter from a lawyer to act as a warning shot- that won’t cost much Does this clarify things a bit more for you?

Ben Jones and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 10 days ago.
thankyou

All the best