Defamation Actions

The wrong of Defamation occurs in Ireland where there is a publication, by any means, of a defamatory statement concerning a person to one or more than one person (other than the first-mentioned person).

The law of defamation in Ireland is governed by the Defamation Act, 2009. This legislation was introduced on the 1st January, 2010 and at the time introduced significant changes to the common law and procedures involving the law of defamation.

Previously, the law of defamation allowed for a distinction between the torts (wrongs) of libel and slander.

Libel was generally defined as a written false statement which was published to a third party and damaged an individuals’ reputation whereas slander concerned the making of a spoken false statement to a third party which damaged an individual’s reputation. However, since the Defamation Act, 2009, this distinction is no longer made and any publication of a wrongful statement is deemed to be simply known as the wrong of ‘defamation’.

Under the 2009 Act, the law provides for any individual to bring an action within one year for a claim where they feel they have been defamed.

The significant impact of a defamatory comment on an individual’s  reputation can be devastating. If you feel you have been subjected to a defamatory comment, please contact us and we will assess your case and give you our professional analysis of your likelihood of success.

If its the case that you are alleged to have committed the wrong of defamation, we can advise as to the likely defences that may arise with such a claim e.g. the defences of truth, absolute and qualified privilege, honest opinion, fair and reasonable publication. We can also advise on how best to approach these cases and to explain the claim against you. We can advice when to offer an apology (if necessary) and how an individual or body can rely on an ‘offer to make amends.’

If you require a consultation or if we can help you in respect of the above, please contact us at 074-9725105 or email us at info@mcintyreobrien.ie.


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