Madgwicks obtains orders against Google LLC

Catherine Ballantyne, a Partner of Madgwicks has recently obtained Federal Court orders against Google LLC to hand over information about one of its account holders in relation to a review left about a local Victorian business.

The Facts

- Madgwicks’ client had a Google review on their business page posted by someone using a pseudonym.

- The Google review was written as if it was a customer and made serious defamatory statements about our client and their staff and encouraged people not to use our client’s business.

- Our client did not have any record of the person who posted the review as a customer.

- Our client approached Catherine Ballantyne to find a solution as to how to deal with this review.

The Solution

Catherine Ballantyne:

- filed proceedings in the Federal Court against Google LLC to produce records of the Google account holder who posted the review.

- served Google LLC’s head office in the United States.

- made detailed submissions demonstrating that:

- there was an underlying claim against the reviewer (in this case in defamation and injurious falsehood); and

- that Google LLC was likely to hold information to identify the party our client was to sue.

The Orders

The Federal Court ordered Google LLC to produce all details they had identifying the user who had posted the review.

Who was the fake reviewer?

The documents produced by Google LLC pursuant to the Federal Court identified the reviewer as a competitor of our client (and not a customer as they claimed in the review).


Even if you have to bring a Court application against one of the biggest companies in the world, it is possible to be successful if you have a good claim and make the right submissions. For further information, please contact Catherine Ballantyne, Partner at: or (03) 9242 4766

Click on these links if you would like to learn more about defamation or injurious falsehood or to see a short video on this matter.

About the Author

Catherine Ballantyne

Businesses rely on Catherine as a disputes specialist who will guide them through complex litigation, and who understands the commercial realities of being involved in a dispute.

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