McKenna v MGN Ltd: QBD 16 Jul 2007

Eady J considered the consequences in costs of a claimant’s assertion of malice in a failed defamation case: ‘There are numerous examples of libel actions in which the fact that malice has been pleaded causes delay and increased cost out of all proportion to its ultimate utility in furthering the overriding objective or arriving at a just result. There need to be available, therefore, in the modern era of civil litigation, suitable disciplinary mechanisms for discouraging unrealistic or tactical pleas of malice. People need to think carefully before alleging bad faith against journalists, newspapers groups or any other defendant just for the sake of it. If such allegations lead to additional cost, but ultimately do not stand up to scrutiny, it is quite right that this should be reflected in determining who should pay.’


Eady J


[2007] EWHC B12 (QB)




England and Wales


See AlsoMcKenna v MGN Ltd QBD 28-Jul-2006
The claimant hypnotherapist said that the defendant had through its newspaper defamed him by accusing him of claiming a bogus PhD. . .

Cited by:

CitedWakefield (T/A Wills Probate and Trusts of Weybridge) v Ford and Another QBD 29-Jan-2009
The claimant, who advised in the preparation of wills, claimed in defamation against the defendant solicitors saying in a letter to another firm of solicitors that he had admitted negligence. There had been a ruling that the occasion had qualified . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Defamation, Costs

Updated: 21 May 2022; Ref: scu.261906