Irish defamation Law is covered by the Defamation Act 2009. A staggering 80% of defamation cases are taken against the media (Source: Lawyer.ie). Article 40.3.2 of the Irish constitution states that “the state shall, in particulars, by its laws, protect, as best it may from unjust attack (and in the case of injustice done, vindicate) the life, person, good name and property rights of every citizen.
But how do you know if you have been defamed? Generally, if someone else has said or published something (either online or offline) which damages your reputation, causes others to think less of you or resulting in you being the source of ridicule, chances are, you have been defamed. However if the information published about you can be proven to be true or trivial in nature, you may not be covered under defamation.
What should you do if you think you been defamed? Your first port of call should be to talk to your solicitor. A good solicitor will advise you if you should proceed with a court action or not.
Slander and libel are also forms of defamation, for you to be truly defamed, you need to prove that the defamatory statement is a lie which caused you harm, which can be backed up by evidence. If the “defamer” is a newspaper, for example, this can be easily obtained by ordering a back issue of the newspaper or checking online. If the defamation is verbal, you may have witnesses.
A good solicitor will firstly ask the defamer to “cease and desist” with their damaging, defamatory lies. Request the statement to be retracted in a certain time period and if this is not adhered to, you may wish to go to court, based on solicitor’s advice.
Everyone in Ireland is entitled to their good name being protected from slanderous lies. The first port of call should be your expert solicitor. If you feel that you been defamed, please call HD Keane today on (051) 874856 or email [email protected]