Rely on the most comprehensive, up-to-date legal content designed and curated by lawyers for lawyers
Work faster and smarter to improve your drafting productivity without increasing risk
Accelerate the creation and use of high quality and trusted legal documents and forms
Streamline how you manage your legal business with proven tools and processes
Manage risk and compliance in your organisation to reduce your risk profile
Stay up to date and informed with insights from our trusted experts, news and information sources
Access the best content in the industry, effortlessly — confident that your news is trustworthy and up to date.
Find up-to-date guidance on points of law and then easily pull up sources to support your advice with Lexis PSL
With over 30 practice areas, we have all bases covered. Find out how we can help
Our trusted tax intelligence solutions, highly-regarded exam training and education materials help guide and tutor Tax professionals
Regulatory, business information and analytics solutions that help professionals make better decisions
A leading provider of software platforms for professional services firms
In-depth analysis, commentary and practical information to help you protect your business
LexisNexis Blogs shed light on topics affecting the legal profession and the issues you're facing
Legal professionals trust us to help navigate change. Find out how we help ensure they exceed expectations
Lex Chat is a LexisNexis current affairs podcast sharing insights on topics for the legal profession
Discuss the latest legal developments, ask questions, and share best practice with other LexisPSL subscribers
What will the court take into consideration when determining the issue of serious harm under the Defamation Act 2013 (DA 2013)? Jeffrey Smele, associate at Simons Muirhead & Burton, examines the decision in Lachaux v Independent Print, Evening Standard Ltd, AOL (UK) and suggests that practitioners are likely to see an increase in applications for trials of serious harm as a preliminary issue.
What is the background to this case?
The claimant is an aerospace engineer and French national, currently living and teaching in the UAE. He brought libel claims against three news publishers regarding five articles published in this jurisdiction (some were also published online in Dubai) between 20 January and 10 February 2014.
The defendants were Independent Print Limited (for two articles, one published in the Independent and one in its sister paper, ‘i’), Evening Standard Limited (for an article appearing in the London Evening Standard) and AOL Limited (for two Huffington Post articles).
Each article complained of contained an account of events in the UAE, including proceedings against the claimant’s ex-wife. The articles reported allegations about the claimant said to have been made by his ex-wife, including of domestic abuse.
Orders had been made for trial of various preliminary issues, and Warby J heard these over two days on 20 and 21 July 2015. As recorded in Warby J’s judgment, the main issue for him to decide was regarding the ‘serious harm’ requirement, which is a relatively new (20 months old) area of defamation law laid down by DA 2013, s 1(1). This is the most important decision on serious harm to date, and it has attracted a great deal of attention and comment. It is especially interesting for practitioners as it deals with the early stage procedural management of defamation cases.
What were the issues in the preliminary hearing?
Four preliminary issues were tried:
Whether (in two of the claims) the words complained of referred to, or were understood to have referred to, the
Access this article and thousands of others like it free by subscribing to our blog.
Read full article
Already a subscriber? Login
0330 161 1234