The Interaction of Remedies for Defamation and Privacy
Precedent, Vol. 108, pp. 14-17, 2012
6 Pages Posted: 7 Mar 2012
Date Written: March 6, 2012
There has been renewed interest in the introduction of a direct, comprehensive right to privacy in Australian law, with three law reform commissions recommending the enactment of a statutory cause of action for invasion of privacy. A comparatively neglected aspect of the proposed reforms is the interrelationship between defamation and privacy. The introduction of an enforceable right to privacy has the potential to subvert well-established principles of defamation law. This article examines in particular the availability of damages and interlocutory injunctions for defamation and privacy. It argues that damages for privacy should be capped but at a higher level than the cap on damages for defamation, reflecting the respective value Australian law should ascribe to the interests underlying these causes of action. It further argues that an interlocutory injunction should not be more readily available for invasion of privacy than for defamation.
Keywords: privacy, defamation, media law, Australia, remedies, damages, injunctions, law reform
JEL Classification: K10, K30
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation