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tammyt
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Legal advice

Postby tammyt » Mon, 06 Feb 2006 2:36 pm

Hi,

Would appreciate if any professionals working in the legal line is able to advise whether posting unsubstantiated accusations in a public forum can constitute slander, and whether the poster can be sued in Singapore?

Also would appreciate advice as to whether I should make a police report, more as a precaution - my previous flatmate moved out but would not return the keys to us due to us having some dispute on the deposit. We can easily change the locks etc, but I would like to prevent any finger pointing, in the event things go missing or having people tresspassing while we are not around.

Thanks

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Re: Legal advice

Postby Bremen » Mon, 06 Feb 2006 3:29 pm

tammyt wrote:Hi,

Would appreciate if any professionals working in the legal line is able to advise whether posting unsubstantiated accusations in a public forum can constitute slander, and whether the poster can be sued in Singapore?

Also would appreciate advice as to whether I should make a police report, more as a precaution - my previous flatmate moved out but would not return the keys to us due to us having some dispute on the deposit. We can easily change the locks etc, but I would like to prevent any finger pointing, in the event things go missing or having people tresspassing while we are not around.

Thanks


Hmmm. I'm not in the legal line, but I'm pretty sure of the following:
1. If the accusations online are blatantly false, and specifically mention you by name, then you may have a case.

2. The cops will just tell you to change your locks. Not returning a key is hardly an offense. They can only act if something disappears.
"Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life."
- Terry Pratchett

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Postby tiki » Mon, 06 Feb 2006 8:14 pm

On the first issue of taking up legal action in the matter of slander, sure you can but be aware that the costs of such proceedings ( incl. of attorney fees ) will most likely outweigh the compensation sought unless the slander cost you a signficant part ( or costs ) of your livelihood. More likely or not it will be viewed as a Civil Suit.

As for the matter of not returning the keys, it depends on the contract or agreement between you and your flatmate. Perhaps it is agreed that the keys would be returned in exchange of refunded deposit. It really depends on prior agreement/s made. You must be aware also that should the agreement state that a deposit refund must be made before returning the keys, then you have to comply or your former flatmate can take up the matter in a court of law. Again most like or not it will be a Civil Suit unless your former flatmate can prove it to be Criminal ie Cheating etc.

If things do go missing DO NOT point or make an accusation that it might be your former flatmate. Should it turn out to be someone else, you can be sued for slander in return. My advise is to change the locks.
'If you feel alive
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of your solitude..'

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Postby k1w1 » Mon, 06 Feb 2006 8:14 pm

I assume you're talking about Kimi's thread where she was asking about whether you were really allowed to withhold her deposit since she gave you a month's notice? The same thread where you bashed *her* pretty seriously yourself accusing her of ruining your things and pissing off everyone she has lived with.

You're now asking if you can make a police report because you don't want to "point any fingers" if anything should wander off while you're not watching... Are you insinuating that she is the type of character to come around to your house and steal your things? Those are some fairly slanderous suggestions, aren't they? Yes, I know you haven't mentioned her name, but if I can work it out, so can anyone else.

By your reckoning most of what is written on internet forums constitutes slander. Have you ever visited the angry board? Sheesh, that place would give you nightmares if Kimi's little spiel on a deposit got your knickers in such a twist.

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Postby tammyt » Tue, 07 Feb 2006 2:08 am

Thanks all for the advice.

Yes, I do not intend to waste unnecessary $ & time to sue anyone. My only fear is that I do not know what lies might have been spread that may have repercussions on me.

And yes, I think changing locks is a better option considering that any one of us could easily lose our keys.


To Kiwi:

I call it slander because I have posted in the classifieds HERE to look for a flatmate, and she accused me in the very same forum with her baseless assumptions, stating my name and all. I would want to know if there are any avenues for me should there be any repercussions from her accusations. People should be more responsible for their actions, no? I personally find the post very malicious in nature, as I do not know how she could accuse me of renting out the room to make a profit when she knew for a fact that I was not even in town and had absolutely no access to her room.

Anyway, I think I will just heed the advice given, change locks and move on.

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Postby superfurryanimal » Tue, 07 Feb 2006 2:53 am

I am a trainee lawyer. Yes if someone has mentioned your name on a public forum and made baseless and unfounded allegations against you, then you definitely do have grounds for an action in libel or defamation.
However, in libel and defamation cases, damages are assessed based on the extent of the damage to your reputation, and how much it is worth to you. For example if you are a person with a high social profile like a celebrity or a government minister, your reputation will generally be assessed to be 'worth more' and as such the damages you are likely to receive for damaging that reputation, are likely to be commensurate with that.

How damages are assessed also depends on the number of people who heard/read the libellous/defamatory remarks. For example, if something defamatory is published in a newspaper with a wide circulation, then you are likely to receive more damages.

Having said that I do not believe that there are that many people on the forum, and even so, I don't think most of them know you personally - your career, marriage, relationships, social profile etc is unlikely to suffer as a result of these allegations. And as such only minimal damages will be awarded.

In Singapore, the losing party generally pays 50-65% of the winning party's legal costs. I would think that to bring an action like that would cost at least $3000-4000, so even if half your costs are covered, that's $1500-2000 that you have to cough up - the damages you receive may not even be able to cover this amount and in any event, are not likely to exceed $3000. The question is whether you think it is worthwhile to go through the trouble to vindicate your reputation. If it's that important to you, by all means go for it, but if it's just a minor or petty dispute, I think the best advice I could give you, is to let sleeping dogs lie!

Just my two cents' worth.

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Postby Bubbles » Tue, 07 Feb 2006 7:20 am

FYI....I don't know you, don't know Kimi either, only through the board. Didn't see the post, and don't know the ramifications of what happened.

Let's just say that even if I had seen and heard it, I'd think you had a pretty slim case.

Surely there must be a better way to sort this than going down the arduous and expensive legal route?

Especially if it is true that there was name calling on both sides.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Dylan Thomas.

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Postby Vaucluse » Tue, 07 Feb 2006 7:21 am

I am a trainee lawyer


:lol:
......................................................

'nuff said Image

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superfurryanimal
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Postby superfurryanimal » Tue, 07 Feb 2006 9:53 am

Vaucluse I don't get the joke?

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Postby Vaucluse » Tue, 07 Feb 2006 10:11 am

Indeed.
......................................................



'nuff said Image

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tiki
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Postby tiki » Tue, 07 Feb 2006 10:54 am

Vaucluse wrote:Indeed.


:wink:

..I'm laffin my PUPILS out Vman!
'If you feel alive

in a darkened room

Do you know the name

of your solitude..'

tammyt
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Postby tammyt » Tue, 07 Feb 2006 4:52 pm

Hi, since the original thread has been deleted, can the folks who posted her nick kindly delete it from your posts, or perhaps the admin can just remove this post as well.

Thanks.

cheria
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I need help!!!

Postby cheria » Wed, 22 Feb 2006 10:00 am

Having a huge problem at home...i really need legal help...

My bro set up a private limited co with his friends and they agree to share the same capital. However my bro do not have enough money so his friends loan him the money. And thereafter there were some arguments and they close down, there were some sales proceeds but i guess my bro did not return/split the money up. So now my bro is being sued.

There was a writ of seizure and these govt officers came to our home to stick whatever they can find.

1. Can these ppl seized all the items in the flat since my bro is not the owner of the flat.

2. I know we have to submit form 22 to prove that the items seized are under our property and not my bro. If we did not keep any receipt or any other prove to show that these items are ours, what else can we do?

3. After this write of seizure if my bro still do not have money to pay up, can he file for bankruptcy or can we negiotate terms with the creditors to come up with some payment plans so that there will not be any subsequent writ of seizure..

i'm desperate now..he can't be bothered and my mum too..nobody cares anymore, they just say take lor..arrghh..this is so frustrating..now im the only person working here..what for i slog like hell and pay off their debts while they still spend money and don't work and keep piling up the credit card bills...why me..sooner or later it's not him committing suicide..it's me..

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Re: I need help!!!

Postby tiki » Wed, 22 Feb 2006 12:54 pm

cheria wrote:Having a huge problem at home...i really need legal help...

My bro set up a private limited co with his friends and they agree to share the same capital. However my bro do not have enough money so his friends loan him the money. And thereafter there were some arguments and they close down, there were some sales proceeds but i guess my bro did not return/split the money up. So now my bro is being sued.

There was a writ of seizure and these govt officers came to our home to stick whatever they can find.

1. Can these ppl seized all the items in the flat since my bro is not the owner of the flat.

2. I know we have to submit form 22 to prove that the items seized are under our property and not my bro. If we did not keep any receipt or any other prove to show that these items are ours, what else can we do?

3. After this write of seizure if my bro still do not have money to pay up, can he file for bankruptcy or can we negiotate terms with the creditors to come up with some payment plans so that there will not be any subsequent writ of seizure..

i'm desperate now..he can't be bothered and my mum too..nobody cares anymore, they just say take lor..arrghh..this is so frustrating..now im the only person working here..what for i slog like hell and pay off their debts while they still spend money and don't work and keep piling up the credit card bills...why me..sooner or later it's not him committing suicide..it's me..


Seems your 'bro' doesn't care so let him face the music.

They spending money...who's money? If it is yours then don't give no more other than what is needed for daily expenditures, essential ones.

To 'qualify' for bankruptcy you need to be indebt to a certain minimal amount. If the amount is measly usually it can be settled in a small claims tribunal or even out of court.

Your 'bro' may not be the owner of the seized items but he is a registered occupant of the place. You can always negotiate provided the other party is willling to participate.

If your 'bro' really doesn't give a hoot then perhaps he should just accept what's coming. He is apparently dodgy as he did not split the proceeds from whatever sales there was.

You tried.... why get yourself into a soup someone else's cooked? With the kind of attitude that he has, do not be surprised if it happpens again and again and again....

...let them take 'lor'.
'If you feel alive

in a darkened room

Do you know the name

of your solitude..'

cheria
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Postby cheria » Wed, 22 Feb 2006 1:12 pm

if let's say my bro is not a registered occupant, can they seized the furnitures?

sometimes i just want to leave this horrible place..

tiki you're right, it kept on happening and this time round is the worse..
Last edited by cheria on Wed, 22 Feb 2006 6:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.


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