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If A Copyright Is Violated, What Remedies Exist?

In the face of infringement, a copyright holder typically wants to bring an end to the infringement. The copyright holder may want damages as well. Under the Copyright Act, (17 U.S.C. §§502-504), they may be entitled to either or both of those remedies.

Missouri Personal Jurisdiction Update

The multi-million dollar jury verdicts which have been rendered against talcum powder makers throughout the country, particularly in cases filed in the City of St. Louis, have been well publicized. Those verdicts remain on appeal and no appellate court has yet to issue an opinion on the merits of those cases. However, a Missouri Court of Appeals opinion from October 2017 has raised new questions about the jurisdictional underpinning of those verdicts which have occurred in Missouri., particularly for non-Missouri resident plaintiffs.

Appellate Court Gives Personal Injury Plaintiffs A Choice Regarding Admission Of Low Medical Expenses In A Post-Tort Reform Era

The State Appellate Court for the Eastern District of Missouri recently issued an opinion in Schieffer v. DeCleene, No. ED 105243 (Mo. E. Dist. November 14, 2017) which allows personal injury plaintiffs to keep the amount of their medical expenses from the jury by omitting any request for recovery of medical expenses from their petitions. This issue arises when the amount paid for the plaintiff's medical treatment is relatively small when compared to their alleged injury and treatment due to the medical provider's contractual rates with the plaintiff's health insurer or the involvement of Medicare or Medicaid.

Be Careful What You Ask For

On November 21, 2017, in an en banc decision, the Missouri Supreme Court once again discussed the scope of permissible medical records requests in personal injury actions. The rule for the proper scope of medical authorizations is that "defendants are not entitled to any and all medical records, but only those records that relate to the physical conditions at issue under the pleadings." Unless special circumstances are shown, the language of defendant's requested authorization should track plaintiff's allegations of injury in the complaint.

What is the fair use exception in copyright law?

The Copyright Act does not prohibit all use of copyrighted work. So-called fair use of copyrighted work is allowed. Generally, fair use is a use which is done for a limited and "transformative" purpose, such as to comment upon, criticize or parody a copyrighted work. Fair use is thus a defense to a claim of copyright infringement. Determining what use is considered "transformative" and what is not is difficult. There are no hard and fast rules governing the question, and the question has been decided in various ways by various different courts. It is a fact-intensive analysis.

Personal Jurisdiction Updates From Illinois:

Recently, the Illinois Supreme Court issued a ruling concerning personal jurisdiction in Aspen American Insurance Co. v. Interstate Warehousing, Inc. 2017 IL 121281. This decision finally clarifies the issue of whether simply registering to do business in Illinois is sufficient to consent to general personal jurisdiction. The Illinois Supreme Court also reviewed the Illinois long-arm statute in relation to federal due process standards.

Those letters at the end of your business name mean something

You've done the smart thing and set up a corporation, limited liability company, or other entity for your business. You've taken this precaution to avoid personal liability for the business's debts and losses. Hopefully, the business will be wildly successful, and you won't have to worry about such things, but it's always good to be prepared. Now that you've done what's necessary to cover your bases, don't make a simple mistake that could undo that careful planning.

What happens if my business network gets hacked and my data gets breached?

We hear about data breaches all the time on the news and assume it is large businesses like Target or Anthem Healthcare. Small businesses don't think a hacker would bother with them since they are small. However, hackers have breached half of the 28 million small businesses in the US. [2016 State of the SMB Cybersecurity Report] This is something that no business owner wants to go through - network security breached, sensitive customer data taken and business secrets potentially exposed. Will there be lawsuits? Am I in compliance will all government/state regulations? Does my insurance cover this? Is the network vendor responsible?

Defendants Secure Protective Orders To Prevent Waiver of Personal Jurisdiction During Discovery

On August 17, 2017, in Holt v. 4520 Corp., Inc., et al., (1622-CC00844), Judge Dierker of the 22nd Judicial Circuit of Missouri, issued an order finding Genuine Parts Company had waived its personal jurisdiction defense by taking steps to litigate the case on its merits including opposing a motion for a change of judge, noticing a deposition of Plaintiff's expert witness, and possibly other discovery. The Court also noted that over a year passed from when Genuine Parts filed its initial motion to dismiss for lack of jurisdiction and when the matter was fully briefed and taken under submission by the Court.

St. Louis Judge Declines to Limit Corporate Representative Deposition to Personal Jurisdiction Issues

Recent rulings by the Missouri Supreme Court and United States Supreme Court have brought personal jurisdiction issues to the forefront in many St. Louis City cases.  In the asbestos case of Rex Terrell v. 4520 Corp., et al. (1422-CC09988), Judge Dierker heard Plaintiff's motion to compel the deposition of Goodyear's corporate representative. Decedent worked over 35 years at a Goodyear facility in Texas, and did not testify to asbestos exposure from any Goodyear products. Plaintiff's counsel argued that a complete corporate representative deposition should be allowed in order to determine what products, if any, Goodyear shipped from Missouri to the Goodyear facility in Texas. Goodyear's defense counsel argued this deposition was unnecessary as Plaintiff lacks personal jurisdiction over Goodyear, and if the deposition is allowed it should only proceed on personal jurisdiction issues.

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