Vardags — when you need to win

Someone is saying untrue and damaging things about me and/or my family

If someone is spreading untruths about you or your family it can have huge consequences, both personally and professionally. In such circumstances your priorities are usually to:

1. identify who is responsible;

2. ensure that they stop;

3. take steps to have the allegations withdrawn or corrected; and

4. obtain some form of compensation, whether by way of an apology or damages.

The law of defamation is there to protect individuals and companies who are the victim of untrue and damaging allegations being made about them.

To bring a claim you must prove that there has been publication of a statement about you to a third party which has caused or is likely to cause serious harm to your reputation.

You must be identified in the defamatory statements. You do not have to be named, but you must be identifiable.

There is a one-year time limit to bring a claim for defamation; the clock starts ticking from the date of publication. So if you think you have been defamed it is important to seek legal advice quickly.

Other legal tools:

There are also other legal tools available to deal with attacks to your reputation. For example, data protection laws enable individuals to request that inaccurate personal data be rectified.

If you think you may need our help, please call us right away. At an initial consultation we can give you preliminary advice, and plan how you might want to proceed.

Please call our confidential enquiry line on 020 7404 9390 to book a consultation. Lines are staffed 24 hours.

How can Vardags help?

In the age of the internet, the old adage that today’s news is tomorrow’s fish and chip paper simply does not apply.

If something defamatory has been published about you then the first step is usually to engage with the publisher via legal correspondence and request a correction or removal, and potentially seek damages and legal costs.

If the author is anonymous, see ‘What can I do if they are hiding behind an anonymous account?’

However, it is important to remember that it is not just the author who has the power to remove content. Website hosts and Internet Service Providers also bear some responsibility and will remove content in certain circumstances.

If the author will not remove the defamatory allegations, one option is to issue proceedings for defamation.

If successful in court, you can potentially obtain:

  • an order preventing further publication of the defamatory allegations;
  • damages;
  • a proportion of your legal costs; and
  • while the court cannot usually force a defendant to apologise, they can order a defendant to publish a summary of its judgment.

The level of damages will depend on the seriousness of the allegation and how much harm it has caused you.

If you think you may need our help, please call us right away. At an initial consultation we can give you preliminary advice, and plan how you might want to proceed.

Please call our confidential enquiry line on 020 7404 9390 to book a consultation. Lines are staffed 24 hours.

The media cannot repeat defamatory allegations with impunity. The fact that they are simply repeating allegations made by someone else does not necessarily offer them a defence. As a publisher, they too are liable for republishing the defamatory allegations.

If you are worried that the media are about to republish defamatory allegations about you it is important to act swiftly and engage legally to halt the spread of the story.

If you think you may need our help, please call us right away. At an initial consultation we can give you preliminary advice, and plan how you might want to proceed.

Please call our confidential enquiry line on 020 7404 9390 to book a consultation. Lines are staffed 24 hours.

Sadly, success breeds envy. The more successful you are the more others want to bring you down.

It is not uncommon for individuals or businesses to find themselves the victim of a concerted campaign designed to damage their reputation. Such attacks can come in many forms; from anonymous blog sites, defamatory allegations on Twitter, the leak of confidential business information, bad mouthing your business to customers and key stakeholders, making damaging amends to Wikipedia or leaking damaging stories to a ‘friendly’ journalist.

The source of such campaigns is wide and varied -  from personal enemies, business rivals or competitors, through to disgruntled current or former employees.

So, if you have been the subject of several reputational attacks, then it might be the work of one individual / group of individuals who have an agenda to attack you or your business.

What can you do in this situation?

  • Establish if there is a concerted campaign (or is it a random and unconnected series of events);
  • Look for evidence to uncover who is behind it;
  • Seek to have the defamatory allegations corrected or removed;

Consider legal remedies against those responsible.

If you think you may need our help, please call us right away. At an initial consultation we can give you preliminary advice, and plan how you might want to proceed.

Please call our confidential enquiry line on 020 7404 9390 to book a consultation. Lines are staffed 24 hours.

Your professional reputation is of the upmost importance to you and your colleagues, customers and clients. Damage to your professional reputation as a result of defamatory remarks can harm both yourself as well as your business, in the form of financial loss.

We can engage swiftly in legal correspondence to ensure the defamatory material is removed or rectified. We will do our upmost to work to mitigate the impact of the attack on your professional reputation, for example by seeking an apology or correction.

If you think you may need our help, please call us right away. At an initial consultation we can give you preliminary advice, and plan how you might want to proceed.

Please call our confidential enquiry line on 020 7404 9390 to book a consultation. Lines are staffed 24 hours.

Every person has the right to a private life. An invasion of privacy can feel like a ruthless attack on your personal livelihood. Often you are not the lone victim, as defamatory remarks regarding your private life will undoubtedly impact those closest to you such as your family.

We can act on your behalf to try and halt the publication of the defamatory material before it is published. If the material has already been published, we can work to secure its removal and obtain an apology, damages or a contribution to your legal costs on your behalf.

Our team is also well versed in commissioning online audits to identify what private and personal information is available about you and your family online. By identifying what is out there, we can work with you to take remedial action and limit your online exposure. Taking control of your online profile is critical to safeguarding your private life.

If you think you may need our help, please call us right away. At an initial consultation we can give you preliminary advice, and plan how you might want to proceed.

Please call our confidential enquiry line on 020 7404 9390 to book a consultation. Lines are staffed 24 hours.

Do not assume that just because the defamatory allegations emanate from an anonymous user or account that you cannot do anything.

  • Cyber investigations can often uncover the identity of anonymous users. People often leave behind proverbial ‘digital breadcrumbs’ which can be used to trace their true identity.
  • There are also legal options available for uncovering the identity of anonymous online users. In some circumstances it is possible to obtain an order from the Court that an ISP (Internet Service Provider) or website host disclose the identity of the anonymous user.

Even if the anonymous user cannot be identified, there are still other options. It is possible to approach ISPs and website hosts to have content removed in certain circumstances, particularly if the content breaches their own Terms & Conditions.

If you think you may need our help, please call us right away. At an initial consultation we can give you preliminary advice, and plan how you might want to proceed.

Please call our confidential enquiry line on 020 7404 9390 to book a consultation. Lines are staffed 24 hours.

Contact Vardags

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020 7458 4358

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01223 855237

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0161 464 5799

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0191 640 8779

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01962 657268

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