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Duggars Lose Lawsuit Against In Touch

Truth rating: 10
Duggars Lose In Touch Lawsuit

By Shari Weiss |

Duggars Lose In Touch Lawsuit

(In Touch)

The Duggars have lost their lawsuit against In Touch. A judge has dismissed the family’s claims against the tabloid roughly five months after they filed suit.

As Gossip Cop reported, Jessa, Jill, Joy and Jinger Duggar sued In Touch and its parent company, Bauer Media, in May over a series of stories the gossip magazine published about their older brother Josh Duggar molesting them. Separately from his sisters, Josh filed his own suit in July. The sisters alleged the outlet violated their right to privacy by writing about the legal issue, which was previously unknown to the masses, despite being a matter of public record. They argued that they gave statements to police and other officials believing they would be kept confidential due to their age, and insisted In Touch had re-victimized them by printing information from official documents. Josh, too, claimed his privacy was violated.

The publication always maintained, however, that all of the reporting was legally obtained via the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), through which it requested various legal papers. City officials reviewed the requests, redacted any parts that could not be shared, and passed on the material in accordance with the law. Now a judge has officially ruled that Bauer Media and its tabloid did indeed play by the rules.

In his decision, the judge explained that the FOIA process was correctly followed, and therefore the publishing company could not be held liable for passing on what was already considered to be public information. It was also pointed out that the Duggars did not allege the material was falsified or untrue. Quoting from a different case as precedent, the judge wrote in his decision, “The United States Supreme Court reaffirmed that the First Amendment requires that ‘if a newspaper lawfully obtains truthful information about a matter of public significance then state officials may not constitutionally punish publication of the information.'”

“Even if one assumes that the disclosure failed to comply with Arkansas statutory redaction requirements, it is clear that the Bauer defendants cannot be held liable,” the judge also wrote. In other words, if In Touch was sent information it shouldn’t have received, that was not the tabloid’s fault. That said, the sisters’ actions against local officials are still in play, as are Josh’s claims against the State of Arkansas Department of Human Services.

 


  1. Gossip Cop
  2. Mediaite
  3. LawNewz
  4. The Mary Sue