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Updates to Defamation Law

Further to our recent blog concerning defamation, there have been significant changes to the Defamation Act 2005 taking place from 1 July 2021.

Amongst other things, the changes require the plaintiff (being the party alleging they have been defamed) to prove that the matter has caused serious harm to their reputation. This effectively removes the defence of triviality and means that minor or trivial matters are less likely to make it to court. In addition, there are changes affecting the start date of the 1-year limitation period to commence a claim in Court.

These changes are designed to encourage parties to resolve defamation disputes without going to court and in turn, relieve pressure on the Court system.

Similar changes are already in effect in New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia and there is hope that there will be uniformity across the nation later this year.

We can assist you quickly and cost-effectively if you think you may have been defamed or if you are being accused of defamation. It is important to act quickly as time limitations apply.

Please do not hesitate to contact McLaughlins Lawyers on (07) 5591 5099 and speak to one of our litigation lawyers today.


Author: Alex Hamlyn

Directors: Ian Kennedy and Sophie Pearson

 Date:   11 August 2021

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