Rebel Wilson has vowed to fight a court ruling that she must return roughly $4 million of the payout awarded in her landmark defamation battle against Bauer Media, after the Court Of Appeals found that record-setting sum was incorrectly awarded.
The Herald Sun reports Wilson has applied for special leave to appeal last month’s decision with the High Court in Melbourne. It’s essentially the last avenue of legal recourse Wilson has in the matter; if the High Court refuses to hear the appeal, that’s it. Donezo.
Bauer Media has three weeks to come up with its own statement to the High Court explaining why they shouldn’t look into the matter any further.
It’s just the latest step in a long and tumultuous legal battle between the two parties.
It started in 2015, when Bauer Media defamed Wilson in a series of magazine articles. Wilson successfully argued those pieces negatively impacted her career, and in 2017, Justice John Dixon made history by ordering Bauer Media to fork over roughly $4.5 in damages.
Bauer Media eventually appealed the titanic sum, arguing that it blew way, way over the kind of defamation payout typically recommended in Australian law. The Court of Appeals upheld that call, and ordered Wilson – who said she would donate the sum – to pay much of it back.
That’s the call Wilson is fighting against now.
Of course, if the High Court does decide there’s merit to her claim, this issue is likely to make its way to the full bench of the court. That process could take months, and the result of any ruling there would have a humongous impact on the Australian media landscape for ages to come.