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JAN
11
3 YEARS

Lindsay Lohan Lawsuit Reignites Battle Between Paparazzi and Stars (Analysis)

This is definitely a two-way fight. Have anti-paparazzi laws worked against celebrities?

Lindsay Lohan Milan Fashion Week Headshot - P 2012
Getty Images

Lindsay Lohan is being sued by a paparazzo who claims he was injured when the actress's chauffeur ran him over while speeding away from a Hollywood club. Who is responsible when celebrity shutterbugs get injured for aggressive behavior?

Grigor Balyan filed the lawsuit on Tuesday in LA Superior Court against Lohan and her driver, Paola Demara, along with management company Tri Star Sports and Entertainment. He claims the defendants "so negligently, carelessly, and recklessly operated, maintained, repaired, owned, and controlled their automobile so as to cause an accident which resulted in personal injuries and property damage to Plaintiff."

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Lohan is not the first celebrity to be targeted by paparazzi for injuries. Among the stars previously sued are Pierce Brosnan, Bruce Willis, Woody Harrelson, Denise Richards, Pamela Anderson, Britney Spears, and Chris Brown

It was never supposed to be like this.

Throughout the years, California has enacted laws to protect celebrities from paparazzi intrusion. In 1998, the state passed legislation that expanded the liability of paparazzi by creating a cause of action against anybody who committed physical trespass or constructive invasion of privacy. That meant that celebrity photographers couldn't use intrusive lenses to pierce the veil of private residences.

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So the paparazzi became more aggressive out in the open, chasing down celebrities on highways or out of residences and nightclubs. In 2006, California reacted once again by extending the liability for assault to any individual who wanted to take a photograph of another person without regard to an expectation of privacy.

Unfortunately, the legislation still wasn't enough to dampen the appetite or financial incentives for juicy photographs.