Search Legislation

Defamation Act 1996

What Version

 Help about what version

Advanced Features

 Help about advanced features

Status:

Point in time view as at 06/05/1999.

Changes to legislation:

There are outstanding changes not yet made by the legislation.gov.uk editorial team to Defamation Act 1996. Any changes that have already been made by the team appear in the content and are referenced with annotations. Help about Changes to Legislation

Close

Changes to Legislation

Changes and effects yet to be applied by the editorial team are only applicable when viewing the latest version or prospective version of legislation. They are therefore not accessible when viewing legislation as at a specific point in time. To view the ‘Changes to Legislation’ information for this provision return to the latest version view using the options provided in the ‘What Version’ box above.

6 Limitation of actions: Northern Ireland.N.I.

(1)The M1Limitation (Northern Ireland) Order 1989 is amended as follows.

(2)In Article 6 (time limit: certain actions founded on tort) for paragraph (2) substitute—

(2)Subject to Article 51, an action for damages for—

(a)libel or slander; or

(b)slander of title, slander of goods or other malicious falsehood,

may not be brought after the expiration of one year from the date on which the cause of action accrued..

(3)In Article 48 (extension of time limit), for paragraph (7) substitute—

(7)Where the action is one to which Article 6(2) applies, paragraph (1) has effect—

(a)in the case of an action for libel and slander, as if for the words from “at any time” to “occurred” there were substituted the words “by him at any time before the expiration of one year from the date on which he ceased to be under a disability”; and

(b)in the case of an action for slander of title, slander of goods or other malicious falsehood, as if for the words “six years” there were substituted the words “one year”..

(4)For Article 51 substitute—

51Court’s power to override time limit: actions for defamation or malicious falsehood.

(1)If it appears to the court that it would be equitable to allow an action to proceed having regard to the degree to which—

(a)the provisions of Article 6(2) prejudice the plaintiff or any person whom he represents; and

(b)any decision of the court under this paragraph would prejudice the defendant or any person whom he represents,

the court may direct that those provisions are not to apply to the action, or are not to apply to any specified cause of action to which the action relates.

(2)In acting under this Article the court is to have regard to all the circumstances of the case and in particular to—

(a)the length of, and the reasons for, the delay on the part of the plaintiff;

(b)in a case where the reason, or one of the reasons, for the delay was that all or any of the facts relevant to the cause of action did not become known to the plaintiff until after the expiration of the period mentioned in Article 6(2)—

(i)the date on which any such facts did become known to him, and

(ii)the extent to which he acted promptly and reasonably once he knew whether or not the facts in question might be capable of giving rise to an action; and

(c)the extent to which, having regard to the delay, relevant evidence is likely—

(i)to be unavailable, or

(ii)to be less cogent than if the action had been brought within the time allowed by Article 6(2).

(3)In the case of an action for slander of title, slander of goods or other malicious falsehood brought by a personal representative—

(a)the references in paragraph (2) to the plaintiff shall be construed as including the deceased person to whom the cause of action accrued and any previous personal representative of that person; and

(b)nothing in Article 48(3) shall be construed as affecting the court’s discretion under this Article.

(4)In this Article “the court” means the court in which the action has been brought..

(5)The amendments made by this section apply only to causes of action arising after the section comes into force.

Annotations: Help about Annotation
Close

Annotations are used to give authority for changes and other effects on the legislation you are viewing and to convey editorial information. They appear at the foot of the relevant provision or under the associated heading. Annotations are categorised by annotation type, such as F-notes for textual amendments and I-notes for commencement information (a full list can be found in the Editorial Practice Guide). Each annotation is identified by a sequential reference number. For F-notes, M-notes and X-notes, the number also appears in bold superscript at the relevant location in the text. All annotations contain links to the affecting legislation.

Marginal Citations

Back to top

Options/Help

Print Options

Close

Legislation is available in different versions:

Latest Available (revised):The latest available updated version of the legislation incorporating changes made by subsequent legislation and applied by our editorial team. Changes we have not yet applied to the text, can be found in the ‘Changes to Legislation’ area.

Original (As Enacted or Made):The original version of the legislation as it stood when it was enacted or made. No changes have been applied to the text.

Point in Time: This becomes available after navigating to view revised legislation as it stood at a certain point in time via Advanced Features > Show Timeline of Changes or via a point in time advanced search.

Close

See additional information alongside the content

Geographical Extent: Indicates the geographical area that this provision applies to. For further information see ‘Frequently Asked Questions’.

Show Timeline of Changes: See how this legislation has or could change over time. Turning this feature on will show extra navigation options to go to these specific points in time. Return to the latest available version by using the controls above in the What Version box.

Close

Opening Options

Different options to open legislation in order to view more content on screen at once

Close

More Resources

Access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item from this tab. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enactedversion that was used for the print copy
  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • correction slips
  • links to related legislation and further information resources
Close

More Resources

Use this menu to access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • correction slips

Click 'View More' or select 'More Resources' tab for additional information including:

  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • links to related legislation and further information resources