Defamation / Slander

The following is a non-exhaustive list of scenarios where you may be entitled to bring defamation proceedings:

  • You were you incorrectly challenged / apprehended by a retail employee or retail security officer;
  • You were you incorrectly challenged / apprehended by a superior in your place of employment;
  • False / misleading statements were made about you on social media;
  • False / misleading statements were made about your business, your product or service online or on social media;
  • False / misleading statements were made about you or your company in print media; or
  • False / misleading statements were made about you or your company on radio or television.

“Defamation” refers to false or misleading statements which have the effect of breaching a person or company’s right to their good name, character or reputation. Previously, defamatory statements that were in written format, for example a newspaper article, were referred to as “slander” however recent legislation has abolished the distinction and all such statements whether in writing or otherwise, are now referred to as “defamation”.

It is important to bear in mind that defamation only arises when the false or misleading statements are made to a third party. If a person makes a statement directly to you which is false, then defamation does not arise. If, however, a person makes a false or misleading statement to another party about you, or makes a false or misleading statement to you which is overheard by a third party, then you may potentially be entitled to bring defamation proceedings.

Please note that the Statute of Limitations in defamation matters is 1 year from the date that the defamatory statement was made. It is therefore imperative that you seek legal advice as soon as possible after you become aware of the circumstances giving rise to your case.

If you or your company have been the victim of any of the above examples of defamation, or if you feel that you may have grounds to bring a defamation action, call Callan & Co today on 042 932 8053