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Malicious Falsehood

A malicious falsehood is a false statement published maliciously by the defendant which either causes or is likely to cause financial loss to the claimant.

Malicious falsehood is a similar type of claim to defamation. Put simply, a malicious falsehood is a false statement published maliciously by the defendant which either causes or is likely to cause financial loss to the claimant. Malicious falsehood has a number of disadvantages over defamation for a claimant. Unlike defamation, a claimant must prove malice, falsity and actual or likely financial loss.

The only advantage of malicious falsehood is that it can apply to any statement whereas in defamation the statement must be defamatory. There may be many statements which can cause financial loss but which are not defamatory. For example, to falsely state that a person has retired, cannot be defamatory but could be damaging to that person’s business or profession.