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Anyone help on a matter of slander (or defamation?)

(11 Posts)
qo Wed 08-May-13 20:24:53

My ex brother in law has been telling people that I've been sacked from my job for stealing (I haven't, in fact I've just been promoted and am looking at another promotion in November)

To start with I just laughed it off, but mud sticks doesn't it? And Ive just been thinking about if/when I decide to change jobs - this rumour could seriously harm my chances.

Any idea if I could take this further - and how I go about it, and what to expect?

Thank you very much in advance smile

qo Wed 08-May-13 20:37:20

Also, what evidence would I need (only have text messages), How much would it cost and realistically - is it worth it?

OldLadyKnowsNothing Wed 08-May-13 20:41:07

Forget about it. There's no Legal Aid for defamation, and you could be looking at thousands and thousands.

NumTumDeDum Wed 08-May-13 20:48:31

More than one way to deal with this. Yes it's slander but it is also harassment. You could consider going down the Protection from Harassment Act route. It can be deslt with in civil proceedings or via criminal proceedings. I'd have thought however that a warning letter from a solicitor may well nip it in the bud.

qo Wed 08-May-13 21:01:32

Thank you, he has also said that he is keeping his kids away from me because I'm a thief (he isn't and I'm not) and he is landlord of a local pub, so this is not going out to just a select few.

I do feel it could be quite damaging, even if not now - at some point.

WestieMamma Wed 08-May-13 21:38:36

As I understand it, it's not enough to show that he has said something which is untrue, you would also have to prove that you have suffered financial loss as a result of that untruth.

qo Wed 08-May-13 21:50:33

Thanks everyone, maybe a complaint to he local police would be the way to go?

But I can't help thinking its too minor to bother them with, or that he hasn't actually done anything illegal?

ImTooHecsyForYourParty Wed 08-May-13 22:28:21

could you hire a solicitor to write to him? hoping that he thinks that you could and would take legal action and is scared off?

Why is he doing this?

It can't harm you professionally as you will be able to prove that it isn't true.

But it's not bloody nice to have such lies told about you!

NumTumDeDum Thu 09-May-13 14:40:49

The problem with harassment as a criminal offence is that by their nature, the individual acts are not illegal. It is necessary to establish a course of conduct which then amounts to harassment. This can be difficult to establish for the purpose of criminal proceedings and in your circumstances you are right to say the police won't be particularly interested. if you were receiving nasty phonecalls/texts they would have more to go on. I would suggest a warning letter from a solicitor asking him to cease and desist and warning him that you have a remedy available under the Act. In any harassment proceedings you must first warn the defendant that the behaviour is considered to be harassment. If he continues you can then take it further. You would however need evidence of this harassment, so unless you are able to provide witnesses you won't get very far. Very often however a warning in the form of a solicitor's letter will suffice.

stevekuncewicz Fri 10-May-13 21:37:12

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

RedHelenB Sat 11-May-13 05:26:24

Do you know WHY he is saying it?

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