In June and July 2012 we published a number of posts as part of an “Inforrm Debate” on the issue as to whether trial by jury should be abolished in libel cases. On 13 July 2012 we published a poll to find out whether our readers favoured the abolition of the statutory right to jury trial contained in clause 11 of the Defamation Bill.
A majority of readers opposed the abolition of the statutory right – although there was no majority in favour of either of the alternatives – retention of the status quo or the introduction of a new statutory discretion, with a list of relevant factors.
These are the results of the voting so far:
How should the Defamation Act deal with the right to jury trial? –
- Leave the position as it is – with a general right, subject to limited exceptions? – 43%
- Abolish the right to jury trial in defamation cases? – 37%
- Provide for a statutory discretion to order jury trial, with a list of relevant factors? – 20%
These results suggest that the majority of practitioners are not in favour of the approach of the Defamation Bill. We will draw these results to the attention of those who are presently considering the Bill.
These are the posts which formed the debate: