The Legal Issues of Writing a Memoir

Speaking up about a recent story, for whatever reason, can be extremely beneficial for many reasons. However, open discourse can also bring about some problems.

Writing the facts and events of your own life is not wrong, but there are particular reasons how it can end up becoming an issue. The problem arises when there is mention of other people’s names in your memoir, among other things. Still, there is still a way to tell your story. You can engage in discourse without telling anyone your name.

Regardless, you should still know the legal consequences. Three of them are mentioned below.


A defamation issue can only arise if what you have stated is false, and it harms someone’s reputation. However, there are certain conditions for libel. The person must be living, and their name doesn’t have to be mentioned.

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Keep in mind that you can even defame an organization or a group.

Right of Publicity

If you don’t write anonymously and are doing it for fame or money, then it could lead to a right of publicity issue. The reason is that you are mentioning real people’s names in your memoir and not sharing any of the money or fame with them.

Invasion of Privacy

Invasion of privacy is a very serious concern that includes making the private information public. As false information can lead to a defamation claim, telling the truth can result in an invasion of privacy lawsuit. The conditions, however, are similar to a defamation case.

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