We regularly act for both plaintiffs and defendants with respect to matters involving defamation. The defamation law in Queensland refers to both defamatory statements that are published in writing and defamatory statements that are spoken, and more recently, to statements made on social media platforms.
Sometimes the situation can be resolved early with the delivery of a Concerns Notice under the Defamation Act and providing an adequate response to that notice. This initial phase offers the parties the opportunity to ensure that further defamation does not occur and provides a further opportunity to attempt to negotiate terms of settlement.
It is important to realise however, that should you wish to sue for damages for defamation you have just 12 months from the date the statements were made to institute Court proceedings. Failure to make a Court Claim within that 12 month period may see you statute barred from seeking a resolution or determination from the Court.
Defenses to defamation
The Defamation Act sets out several defenses to a claim for defamation such as:
- when the statements are justified because they are substantially true,
- when the statements are part of an honestly held opinion and
- when the statements are contextually true.
If you are served with a Concerns Notice or a Court Claim, it is very important you seek legal advice straight away in order to protect your interests.
If you think you have been defamed, contact us for a review of your situation.