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Qualified privilege

Reynolds privilege exists where the public interest justifies publication notwithstanding that this carries the risk of defaming an individual who will have no remedy. This requires a balance to be struck between the desirability that the public should receive the information in question and the potential harm that may be caused if the individual is defamed.
Per Lord Phillips in Flood v Times Newspapers Ltd [2012] UKSC 11. (The Times newspaper claimed qualified privilege in respect of an article which alleged that the claimant policeman was guilty of corruption.)
Reynolds, like Flood, like dealt principally about the privilege of journalists, but some of the arguments in Reynolds, may be of application outside this area, for example in relation to reports of disciplinary proceedings.

 

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