Judge v. Saltz Plastic Surgery, PC2014 UT App 144 (June 26, 2014)
Jun 26, 2014
A woman sued her plastic surgeon after he gave before and after photos of her to a television news reporter and the photos were broadcasted on television and the Internet. The district court granted summary judgment to the plastic surgeon, based partly on the conclusion that the photographs did not reveal private facts about the woman because they showed portions of her body that she had previously disclosed while wearing a bikini in public. This was based on an extension of the Restatements (Second) of Torts, which states that “there is no liability for giving further publicity to what the plaintiff himself leaves open to the public eye.” Id. ¶ 26 (citation and internal quotation marks omitted). The Utah Court of Appeals reversed, holding that the district court stretched the Restatement too far. Although the woman may have been willing to make a public fact of what she looked like in a certain bikini on a certain day in a certain context, by doing so she did not lose her ability to argue that whatever parts of her body that bikini revealed were private facts on different days in different contexts. The court reversed summary judgment and remanded for further proceedings.