Bill to reform libel law and allow more free debate is expected in next parliament

BMJ 2012; 344 doi: (Published 19 March 2012) Cite this as: BMJ 2012;344:e2157
  1. Clare Dyer
  1. 1BMJ

A bill to reform libel law in England and Wales to give greater protection to free debate on matters of public interest is expected to be included in the Queen’s speech in May.

By convention, the contents of the sovereign’s speech to parliament outlining forthcoming legislation are not trailed in advance. But peers involved in the reform process, including the justice minister Tom McNally, hinted strongly at a seminar on 15 March that the bill would form part of the next parliamentary programme.

Lord McNally told delegates at the Westminster Legal Policy Forum keynote seminar on libel reform in central London: “I would …

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