Source: All England Reporter
Publisher Citation: [2014] All ER (D) 71 (Aug)
Neutral Citation: [2014] EWHC 2831 (QB)
Court: Queen's Bench Division

Mr Justice Bean

Representation Hugh Tomlinson QC (instructed by Wragge Lawrence Graham) for the claimants.
  David Price QC (of David Price Solicitors and Advocates) for the defendants.
Judgment Dates: 13 August 2014


Libel and slander - Defamation - Serious harm - Claimants being private landlord - Defendant publishing article in which it was alleged by claimants they were portrayed as 'slum landlords' - Claimants bringing action against defendants in defamation - Whether words capable of bearing meaning claimed by claimant - Whether serious harm being caused to reputation - .

The Case

Libel and slander Defamation. The first claimant was the CEO of the second claimant, a private landlord company. A newspaper article was published by the defendants in which it was alleged by the claimants had portrayed them as 'slum landlords'. The claimants brought a claim in defamation against the defendants as a result of the article. Following a trial of two preliminary issues, the Queen's Bench division held that the words complained of had the meaning that the claimants were a well-off landlord making money at the misery of the tenants. The claimants had nevertheless failed to demonstrated serious harm to reputations as required by of the Defamation Act 2013.

If you are a LexisLibrary subscriber you can read more about this case here.