Doniger / Burroughs Client United Fabrics Reverses District Court on Appeal, Prevails on Summary Judgment

In a case filed by fabric company United Fabrics alleging copyright infringement against Macys and its vendors, the situation looked dire when the district court judge dismissed the case sua sponte, finding that the copyright registration for the design at issue was invalid. Undaunted by this setback, Doniger / Burroughs partner Scott Burroughs appealed the decision to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. Before a panel of three appellate judges, Mr. Burroughs pleaded his client’s case, noting that Macys’ attorneys had urged a misapplication of the law, and there was no evidence or precedent to support the district court decision.

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals was persuaded by Mr. Burroughs’ argument, finding unanimously in favor of his client, and reinstating the case. Back at the district court level, Mr. Burroughs requested a renewed ruling on the Motion for Summary judgment that had previously been denied at the same time the case was dismissed. The judge agreed, and partially granted the motion.

As the Doniger / Burroughs trial team was preparing the matter for the jury, more than two and a half years after the case had been filed, and just one day before trial was set to commence, Macys settled, agreeing to pay a substantial six-figure sum to avoid the jury trial.

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    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.