Ask a Law Question, Get an Answer ASAP!
Hi thank you for your message, please note that I will look to provide an accurate but nevertheless speedy reply to your inquiry. I am sorry to hear about your situation but I will endeavour to help you today.
What do you wish to know?
You cannot, any report to the police is protected by public interest immunity due to the public interest in persons going to the police without being sued. The same applies to any statements related to or during legal proceedings. I trust this assists
Ok fine, If you wanted to bring a defamation action, you would need to establish that a statement has been made about you which would lower people's opinion of you in the estimation of right thinking members of society generally. Broadly, the test is whether a statement would cause one to think less of you. The other side can defend a claim under the grounds of justification, privilege or fair comment. In relation to the defences, Justification is a complete defence to the action of defamation (as long as the defendant can prove that the statement is substantially true). The defendant does not need to show that there is public interest in the publication or whether they acted maliciously. Privilege, does not apply here because this applies to circumstances such as parliamentary proceedings or court hearings. Finally, fair comment, is a defence if the defendant can show that the statement is an expression of opinion on a matter of public interest (and not a statement of fact. A matter of public interest is viewed by the courts as matters which will affect people at large to the extent that they may be legitimately interested in what is going on (or indeed what might be happening to them).The comment does however have to be based on true facts which are stated in the publication or are referred to. The defendant must prove that the underlying facts are true. The defence will not stand if it can be shown that the comment was made maliciously. In terms of the chances of being successful, as an area of law defamation actions tend to be difficult to win because of the range of defences available and because courts are reluctant to impinge and curb freedom of expression especially where the comment that is subject to the action could be seen as in the public interest. In relation to costs, it is not possible to say how much this might be with any great specifics because it would depend on the lawyers you would hire, the area of the country and the complexity of the case but such actions tend to be expensive and cost many thousands of pounds. Furthermore, even if you are successful in your action you are not guaranteed to recover your costs. It will probably cost you at least £10,000 just to instruct some solicitors. I trust this assists
Happy to help, take care