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W v Westminster City Council & Ors

LTL 21/2/2005; [2005] 4 All ER 96; [2005] EWHC 102 2005-02-21

Where a local authority had pleaded qualified privilege in defending itself and its social workers against a claim in defamation, the relationship between the social workers was an established one requiring free and frank communication on all relevant questions, and the fact that the information in the words was not verified could not take the care outside qualified privilege unless the defendants were deliberately publishing what they knew to be outside official guidance known to them. Although the publication was an interference with the claimant’s rights under the European Convention on Human Rights 1950 Art. 8, monetary compensation was not required to afford him just satisfaction.