Knowing Your Rights – Copyright Infringement

Most artists are not aware of their rights under copyright law. In responding to numerous questions from artists, it has become apparent that some people think that the full extent of copyright protection only allows an artist to force an infringer to cease and desist use of his/her work. While a cease and desist letter is certainly in order when one’s work is being ripped off, a copyright owner is also entitled money damages. Money damages can come in the form of statutory damages (stay tuned for more posts regarding statutory damages), lost profits and/or disgorgement of the infringer’s profits derived from the infringement (stay tuned for more on these subjects too).It’s wise to consult with an attorney who has experience in copyright litigation and an attorney who is committed to the enforcement of an artist’s rights under the law. The cease and desist demand is the first step in the process, and an experienced arts attorney will be able to draft the letter for maximum impact, and advise you regarding the next steps, which may include litigation.

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  • About the Firm

    Doniger / Burroughs is California’s premier fashion, art, entertainment, and technology law boutique. The firm has resolved more than 1,000 disputes over the almost 20 years it has been in existence, and has represented all manner of individuals and businesses in the creative industries. Its lawyers have extensive state and federal court experience, and hail from well-regarded law schools. The firm has been on the forefront of cutting-edge copyright law, appearing often before judges, juries, and the Courts of Appeal. It has tried more copyright infringement cases than virtually any other firm over the last 5-10 years, and has obtained for its clients numerous six- and seven-figure verdicts and settlements.

    The firm is committed to representing artists and content creators, and enforcing intellectual property rights. It has litigated successfully against many of the nation’s largest retailers, film and television studios, web sites, and news organizations. Its partners speak and write often on art and copyright law issues, and devote significant time and resources to ensuring a level playing field for those responsible for the creation of art and content.