Question: When is it appropriate to sue someone for defamation?Answer:
Defamation occurs where one person communicates, by words, photographs, video, internet, illustrations or other means, material which has the effect or tendency to damage the reputation of another. If someone has hurt your reputation you may have grounds to sue for defamation.
In order to sue for defamation, you’ll need to prove that the statement made against you was public, false, injurious and unprivileged. If you determine this to be true, the next step is to write a complaint, then seek the help of an attorney to either settle with the defendant, or, if it cannot be resolved in negotiations, taking it to court.
As the plaintiff, you must prove that:
- The communication has been published by the defendant; and
- The communication has been published to a third person; and
- The communication identifies or is about the plaintiff; and
- The communication is defamatory.
For more information see how to protect yourself from defamation.