Fair Comment Legal Meaning and Definition

Here is a simplified definition of the legal term Fair Comment.

Fair Comment (n.): A legal term referring to a form of defense used in defamation lawsuits, particularly libel. It pertains to the expression of opinion that is based on true and accurately presented facts, without alleging dishonorable intentions of those being commented on. In the United States, the Supreme Court has deemed that public figures are subject to comments, even if potentially untrue and damaging, provided they are not intentionally malicious. This defense is critical for media entities faced with libel suits. A public figure can only sue for defamation if the shared information would also constitute a valid basis for a lawsuit if directed at a private individual not open to public scrutiny.