Public Figure Doctrine

4 April 2015
Examines evolution of the law defining & affecting public figures in defamation suits. Examples, court decisions, voluntary vs. involuntary involvement, malice and impact on professionals in public.

The Public Figure Doctrine and Professionals
This paper will examine the development of the public figure doctrine in defamation cases and discuss the application of this doctrine to professionals, particularly attorneys and teachers. The first part of the paper will focus upon the historical development of the public figure doctrine, looking at the evolution of the doctrine in the U.S. Supreme Court. The second part of the paper will examine how lower courts have handled the doctrine, particularly in light of the vagueness of the Supreme Court’s guidelines. The third part of the paper will discuss how the doctrine has been applied in cases involving professionals. This section will especially address the question of whether a professional is more likely than another person to be considered a public figure.

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Public Figure Doctrine. (2015, Apr 23). Retrieved September 19, 2020, from
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