Rachel E. Fugate's Profile Image

Rachel E. Fugate

Rachel Fugate is an experienced litigator and appellate lawyer. She has represented national media companies, local and regional newspapers and television stations, book publishers, film producers, reality television programs, artists, universities, and non-profit corporations. Rachel litigates with an emphasis on media, internet and First Amendment disputes. She defends publishers and broadcasters in complex defamation, invasion of privacy, and other content-related claims and prosecutes actions for access to government information. As a commercial litigator, Rachel handles a variety of cases, including business torts, contract disputes, and tortious interference. As an appellate lawyer, Rachel has appeared before all Florida District Courts of Appeal and has argued matters before the Florida Supreme Court and Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals. With a content-related focus, she has prepared amicus briefs on issues ranging from satire as fair use to the abolishment of false light in Florida and has filed numerous emergency certiorari petitions for access to government records.

Rachel’s practice also concentrates on preventive litigation measures. She provides publishers and broadcasters daily advice on a variety of content related issues, including newsgathering advice, responses to retraction demands and subpoenas, pre-broadcast and pre-publication review, and advice concerning protection and use of intellectual property, internet content and publication practices.

Rachel serves on the Governing Committee of the American Bar Association’s Forum on Communications Law. She is a past Vice Chair of the American Bar Association’s Section of Individual Rights & Responsibilities First Amendment Committee and former chair of the Media Law Committee of The Florida Bar. Prior to entering private practice, Rachel was a staff attorney at Capital Collateral Counsel – Northern Region.


  • JD, magna cum laude, Florida State University, 1998
  • BS, University of Florida, 1995

Bar Admissions

  • Florida
  • U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit


  • Rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Florida Super Lawyers (2014-2021)
  • Florida Super Lawyers Rising Stars (2009-2013)

Speaking & Media


  • Co-Author, Access to Juvenile Records & Proceedings, Reporter’s Handbook, The Florida Bar.
  • Co-Author, Cloud Over 2004 Hurricane Relief Aid Finally Lifts as Appellate Court Tells FEMA to Hand Over Addresses, MLRC MediaLawLetter (June 2007).
  • Co-Author, Anatomy of a First Amendment Retaliation Claim, MLRC MediaLawLetter (December 2005).
  • Co-Author, CNN Sues Florida for Copy of Suspected Felon List, MLRC MediaLawLetter (June 2004).
  • Author, Choppy Waters are Forecast for Academic Free Speech, 26 Fla. St. U. L. Rev. 187 (1998).
  • Author, The Florida Constitution: Still Protector of Citizens’ Rights?, 25 Fla. St. U. L. Rev. 87 (1997).

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