Defamation Act 2009

6.

Defamation.

6.— (1) The tort of libel and the tort of slander—

( a) shall cease to be so described, and

( b) shall, instead, be collectively described, and are referred to in this Act, as the “ tort of defamation ”.

(2) The tort of defamation consists of the publication, by any means, of a defamatory statement concerning a person to one or more than one person (other than the first-mentioned person), and “ defamation ” shall be construed accordingly.

(3) A defamatory statement concerns a person if it could reasonably be understood as referring to him or her.

(4) There shall be no publication for the purposes of the tort of defamation if the defamatory statement concerned is published to the person to whom it relates and to a person other than the person to whom it relates in circumstances where—

( a) it was not intended that the statement would be published to the second-mentioned person, and

( b) it was not reasonably foreseeable that publication of the statement to the first-mentioned person would result in its being published to the second-mentioned person.

(5) The tort of defamation is actionable without proof of special damage.