The tumour suppressor TP53 (previously termed p53) mediates a pathway that is considered to be one of the most important mechanisms in the maintenance of genomic stability. The function of TP53 can be abrogated by genomic deletion, mutation, or deregulation of upstream and downstream participants in the TP53 pathway. While aberrations of TP53 are widely prevalent in non-haematological malignancies (over 60%), they are present in much lower frequency in haematological malignancies (<20%). Nevertheless, in those cases where TP53 function or expression is aberrant, correlation with inferior clinical outcome (such as overall survival and progression or transformation) has generally been strong. In this review, we focus our discussion on the relationship between TP53 and lymphoid malignancies as defined by the World Health Organization. Specifically, we examine the prevalence of TP53 aberrations and their prognostic significance in various types of lymphoid cancer. Next, we discuss the various mechanisms of TP53 inactivation. Finally, we summarize progress in the use of recent therapeutic modalities that target TP53.