Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 2005
Current version for 9 April 2020 to date (accessed 5 August 2020 at 00:14)
Part 14 Division 6 Rule 14.31
14.31   Defamation defences generally
(cf SCR Part 67, rules 13 and 19(1); DCR Part 49, rule 12)
(1)  Subject to rules 14.32–14.40, a defendant in proceedings for defamation must plead any defamation defence specifically.
(2)  If the plaintiff in defamation proceedings complains of two or more imputations, the pleading of any of the following defences must specify to what imputation or imputations the defence is pleaded—
(a)  a defence under section 15(2) or 16(2) of the Defamation Act 1974,
(b)  a defence under section 25 or 26 of the Defamation Act 2005,
(c)  the defence of justification at common law.
(3)  If a plaintiff intends to meet any defamation defence—
(a)  by alleging that the defendant was actuated by express malice in the publication of the matter complained of, or
(b)  by relying on any matter which, under the Defamation Act 1974 or the Defamation Act 2005, defeats the defence,
then the plaintiff must plead that allegation or matter of defeasance by way of reply.