What are a person’s rights if they were photographed while sleeping in the nude?

If someone takes a picture of you without your knowledge or consent (while you’re sound to sleep) is that a crime or civil offense of some sort? If the picture is sexual in nature (nude) and they were told before (weeks and months prior) not to but did it anyway? What is your recourse?

Asked on July 15, 2010 under Personal Injury, Texas


S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

The person who was photographed could sue the photographer for invasion of privacy.  Invasion of privacy is a serious and unreasonable interference with one's right to be left alone.  If the photographer sold the photo or used the photo for a commercial purpose, another aspect of invasion of privacy would also be applicable.  That aspect of invasion privacy is appropriation of one's name or likeness for commercial purposes.

The lawsuit for invasion of privacy should also include a separate cause of action (claim) for intentional infliction of emotional distress.  Intentional infliction of emotional distress is an extreme and outrageous act intended to cause and which does cause emotional distress.  The nude photo taken without consent constitutes an extreme and outrageous act intended to cause and which does cause emotional distress.

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