This next point is very important. You are writing about the truth. Even if you are writing your own story if you still need to include other real recognizable characters in it, asking permission from these people will be necessary.
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If you think that the character in your book and the person in real-life is not recognizably similar, you still need to check if consent is needed from them. Remember that you are still including certain elements of their lives. Tell them that the names will be changed and that they may only see reflections of their history on your narrative. As mentioned, you can add something to their personalities, making them stronger and more fitting for your story than they actually are.
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