According to Gideon Benaim, a former Spear’s award-winner, the work of a reputation protection lawyer has become ‘more about giving advice than going to court’. He notes that scarcely a handful of defamation cases have made it to court in the past year: ‘There just aren’t that many trials.
The Simkins partner has noticed an increase in work accounted for by HNWs and businesspeople. He also represents a number of celebrities and sports stars.In 2018 Benaim picked up the gong for ‘Case of the Year’ at the Spear’s Wealth Management Awards in recognition of his landmark battle on behalf of Sir Cliff Richard in his case against the BBC and the South Yorkshire Police. The High Court ruled that the BBC infringed on the singer’s privacy in its reporting of a police raid on his home in 2014.
His client was awarded £210,000 damages and £850,000 on account of legal costs.‘It was a case of being in the eye of the storm,’ recalled Benaim, who clearly has empathy for his client. ‘Once the cat’s out of the bag, it doesn’t matter that, four years later, you win a court case.’ Where possible, ‘preparation and prevention is the best way to deal with things