The independent press regulator IPSO today (March 1) welcomed the government’s decision to seek repeal of Section 40 of the Crime and Courts Act. The law would have forced media organisations to pay legal costs of libel cases if they won or lost.
Matt Tee, Chief Executive of IPSO said:
“The decision to repeal Section 40 of the Crime and Courts Act is a hugely significant victory for press self-regulation and an endorsement for the role IPSO has played in helping to restore trust in the industry.
“We are delighted that Culture Secretary Matt Hancock has recognised the ‘significant steps’ taken by IPSO to demonstrate its independence as a regulator and will make every effort to meet the challenge he posed to us to continue to improve our work.
“Section 40 would have meant a newspaper might risk crippling costs even if it acted in the public interest to expose wrongdoing. This could have been fatal in the case of most local and some national newspapers which could not have survived spurious legal claims."