It’s important to know that defamation lawyers Sydney assist clients who are in a defamation lawsuit against another party. Defamation is the act of destroying someone’s reputation through written or verbal statements. People who want to win this type of case must prove that the defendant defamed them and caused harm to their reputation.
For instance, suppose that Person A wrote on Twitter that “I suffered from food poisoning from this restaurant, so I suggest that you never support their business any longer”. Their statement provided no further evidence to back their claim.
Hence, person A can receive a defamation lawsuit from the restaurant as they are trying to destroy the restaurant’s reputation. Consequently, the restaurant manager can hire defamation lawyers in Sydney to defend himself. In New South Wales, the Defamation Act 2005 governs and promotes uniform law on defamation in Australia. This article will discuss the importance of defamation lawyers in Sydney.
Latest Update on the Johnny Depp and Amber Heard Case
Many people might have seen or heard about the famous defamation case of Johnny Depp and Amber Heard. Mr Depp sued Ms Heard because of an op-ed she posted in The Washington Post back in 2018. The headline was “I spoke up against sexual violence — and faced our culture’s wrath. That has to change”.
After a gruelling six-week case hearing, Depp won his defamation case on June 1, 2022. He was also awarded a total of 10.35 million dollars. Meanwhile, the jury only awarded 2 million dollars in damage to Ms Heard. Disheartened, Ms Heard moved to appeal the case’s verdict.
Ms Heard’s lawyer then filed a notice of appeal to the Virginia Court of Appeals on July 21, 2022. Ms Heard’s spokesperson also said that they believe that the court failed to give a just and fair verdict. The spokesperson also added: “While we realise today’s filing will ignite Twitter bonfires, there are steps we need to take to ensure both fairness and justice.”
What Do People Need to Prove if a Person Defamed Them?
Firstly, plaintiffs or the person suing must prove that a statement was indeed defaming them. The general audience must also understand that the statement had the intention of defaming someone. Plaintiffs will also need to prove that the defamatory statement will harm their business, reputation, or them as a person.
Secondly, plaintiffs must prove that a defamatory statement particularly referred to them. This means that the statement must contain the plaintiff’s exact name. If plaintiffs can show this, they will have a good chance of having their case approved and having the defendant called over to the court.
Thirdly, plaintiffs must also prove that a third person saw the defamatory statement either through words or pictures. Readers or listeners can act as third persons and assist the plaintiff if they have evidence of the defamatory statement.
What Can Defamation Lawyers Sydney Do in a Defamation Lawsuit?
The law acknowledges circumstances in which it requires freedom of speech without the risk of defamation lawsuits. The two primary examples are found in courts and legislatures. Absolute privilege protects members of parliament and witnesses in judicial proceedings from defamation. This implies that they are immune from lawsuits no matter what they say in court hearings.
Protection often applies if a plaintiff’s report is reasonable and honest. It will definitely take time to prepare evidence and witnesses when it comes to these types of cases. Moreover, numerous interviews and fact-finding will make it difficult for a plaintiff if they do it alone. Defamation lawyers in Sydney can help with the following:
Defamation Lawyers Sydney: Discuss Costs and Damages
People involved in a defamation case will indeed wonder how much it costs to hire defamation lawyers in Sydney. Most of these lawyers usually charge fixed fee services for their clients. However, these people might also need to discuss other costs aside from the defamation lawyer’s costs.
A plaintiff may also need to demonstrate “actual” losses incurred in relation to their property, business, trade, profession, or occupation. This also includes any costs incurred as a result of the defamatory comments. Usually, plaintiffs will need to hire experts to help them calculate the damages. Here are the different kinds of damages or money awarded in these types of cases:
1. General or compensatory damages – Courts may award this type of damage for a person’s damaged reputation and feelings. If there is no harm done, a judge or jury may award nominal damages which are small fees from the court.
2. Special Damages – This type of award compensates business damage and earnings for the plaintiff. This may also include any money that the plaintiff spent in defending false allegations. For instance, releasing PR statements to the public.
3. Aggravated damages – Courts award this type of damage if the defamation was made out of ill will or illicit motives (malice). For instance, a person wants to destroy someone’s reputation without proper evidence, hence creating a scandal just for fun.
Both parties share information at this point in order to prepare for trial. Defamation lawyers in Sydney can create interrogatories for the other party. Interrogatories are questions that the other party must answer in writing and under oath. These lawyers can also take depositions, which are question-and-answer sessions conducted under oath.
Settling Through Mediation or Arbitration With JB Solicitors
Civil lawsuits are often settled through proper mediation or arbitration and defamation cases are no exception. These out-of-court resolutions are another option for parties if they don’t want to proceed with expensive court procedures or trials. Sometimes, parties may settle these types of cases even before a plaintiff files a lawsuit.
However, if parties continue to have disagreements, they will have to proceed to a court hearing. Both plaintiffs and defendants will heavily depend on their lawyers’ skills if they want to win the case. They will also need expert witnesses that can support their case and evidence.
JB Solicitors’ defamation lawyers in Sydney help people who are going through defamation cases. Our lawyers will first advise our clients to undergo mediation or arbitration to settle a case. These methods are inexpensive compared to court procedures and will enable both parties to come to an amicable agreement. When all else fails, we will represent you in court and defend your rights and interests effectively.
Contact our defamation lawyers Sydney today.