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Carpenters Solicitors- Defamation Laws The Defamation Act of 1952 is a legal document which consolidated more than a century’s worth of case law which related to defamation. Under this Act legal professionals created the definitions of slander and libel, and defined things such as fair comment and privilege, as well as defenses of justification. These terms essentially mean that a person must be capable of proving that another person’s comments, whether they were made verbally or in print, caused them suffering. With this Act, the onus was on the accused to prove that the statements they made were truthful and fair. The Defamation Act of 1996 was created with the aim of clarifying a number of the more complex points made in the 1952 Act. The first change was to reduce the liability of those who were involved in the publication and distribution of a magazine or newspaper which contained libelous statements, as technically, before this change was made Carpenters Law, even the shop who sold the printed work would be considered liable in the eyes of the law. However, even with the clarifications made in the 1996 Act, both Acts have been the subject of strong criticism, for the way in which they infringe on free speech, especially considering the very high settlements which have been awarded by the High Court, as well as the advent of super injunctions. Because of these issues, a report created in 2009 by two pressure groups, which made a number of recommendations for a reform to the current defamation Act. This report was supported by many law firms, including Carpenters Law firm. These reforms, it was hoped, would ensure that a balance was maintained between the protection of reputation and freedom of expression. The report, which the groups entitled ‘Free Speech is not for Sale’ made recommendations that the onus should be on the claimant to prove that damage and suffering was caused, that compensation should never exceed £10,000 and that the definition of what the term ‘publication’ should be simplified and modernized. The report also stated that a defense of public interest should be created, and that the definition of what ‘fair comment’ meant should be expanded. Lastly Carpenters Solicitors, it was recommended in the report that laws should be created specifically for defamation which occurred on the internet, and that corporations should not be permitted taking libel action, unless they can very clearly prove malicious falsehood.

Solicitors Carpenters