Someone in my profession is referring to themselves as Dr. so and so (ABD). It is my understanding that they are not a Dr. since they have not completed the dissertation process. Doesn't it seem fraudulent to refer to yourself as Dr. without completing a doctoral program?

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    Yeah, it's obviously misleading, since "the thesis" is not a trifling matter. But there are (in the U.S., as far as I know) no clear "legal" rules about such references (in contrast to precise laws in Germany, apparently). Aug 24 '15 at 21:27
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    Just an FYI (ABD) means All But Dissertation.
    – The Hiary
    Aug 24 '15 at 21:59
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    Looks like a dupe of four other questions today...
    – keshlam
    Aug 24 '15 at 22:28
  • By the way: it may not be fraud in a legal sense, even if the person has not completed a doctoral program. Not all jurisdictions have laws controlling use of the title "Dr."
    – David Z
    Aug 24 '15 at 23:56
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    Have some fun with this. You can call him Dr ABD forevermore. Aug 25 '15 at 2:08

Yep, can't do that. Either you do or you don't have the "Dr." and if you're ABD, you don't.

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