Intellectual Property Disputes
The value of intellectual property assets has dramatically increased over the 33 years during which the attorneys at Berman Litigation Group have practice law. We help our clients with IP strategies that protect and add value to their intangible assets. Our experience encompasses a wide array of industries and technologies.
Our attorneys in our Intellectual Property department have substantial experience in all phases of Intellectual Property disputes, which provides our clients with an advantage over other law firms. In addition to representing clients in over 100 lawsuits in which a preliminary injunction was sought, attorneys in the Intellectual Property group have tried many Intellectual Property trials, before both juries and judges, and have acted as counsel of record in dozens of appeals. Berman Litigation Group has consistently achieved outstanding results for our clients in complex intellectual property-related disputes.
Our intellectual property attorneys provide counsel in connection with:
Copyrights. Berman Litigation Group provides representation related to the protection of creative works. We advise clients on a wide scope of copyright protection including copyright registration, assignment and licensing. Our copyright practice has focused on industries as diverse as television, motion pictures, music, and technology. We counsel individuals and corporate entities on issues surrounding works made for hire and represent copyright owners whose works have been infringed and against claims of infringement.
Trademarks. Our attorneys are dedicated to protecting the good names of our clients, literally. Our attorneys counsel clients on a variety of trademark issues, including searching, clearance, registration, prosecution and protection of trademarks domestically and throughout the world.
Trade Secrets, Unfair Competition and “Employment Mobility” Issues. Our attorneys counsel clients regarding the protection of their valuable proprietary information by preventing the unauthorized disclosure and use of trade secrets and the implementation of confidentiality measures through agreements and policy manuals, and the acquisition of trade secrets through licenses and assignments. We have helped our clients identify their legitimate rights in trade secrets and provided opinions on the scope and validity of those rights.
When a company hires its competitor’s employees – whether it is a single executive, a salesperson or an entire department or division – the competitor often feels threatened and claims of breach of fiduciary duty, unfair competition, trade secret misappropriation often result. Demands for injunctive relief are common in these cases. The stakes are often high. For all involved, emotions can run rampant. The ability of workers to pursue their livelihoods, the ability of businesses to freely compete for customers, and the rights of companies to protect their methods, know-how and irreplaceable customer information and goodwill are often at risk. Whether in defense or prosecution, success depends on knowledgeable and aggressive counsel.
We have substantial experience in defending and prosecuting these claims, and have successfully defended and prosecuted trade secret misappropriation, unfair competition and “corporate raiding” cases involving hundreds of millions of dollars in claimed damages. Our attorneys regularly obtain and defend against the issuance of injunctive relief in these cases.
False Advertising. False advertising is a deceptive practice through which businesses facilitate the sale of their product or service at the expense of the consumer. False, misleading, deceptive or untrue statements regarding the price, quality, or nature of a product are illegal under both state and federal laws and the Federal Trade Commission, the State Attorney General and local District Attorney offices are empowered to seek civil redress against offending businesses. Our attorneys regularly defend against such claims and have the experience and knowledge needed to quickly and efficiently represent clients in these types of cases.
- Defended interior design company against trademark claims brought by the Rothschild family and obtained a complete dismissal with prejudice of all claims with no money paid by the client and without sacrifice of any intellectual property rights. Motion for attorney’s fees pending. Baron Philippe de Rothschild SA v. Rothschild Productions (C.D.Cal. 12-CV-3884-MMM-JCX.)
- Defended a publicly traded company against misappropriation of trade secrets claims brought by a multinational conglomerate related to call-center activities in the Philippines, and obtained a complete dismissal with prejudice and full release of the client with no money paid by the client after almost four years of litigation. Aegis USA, Inc. v. TeleTech Holdings (L.A.S.C. BC413423.)
- Served as lead counsel for one of the world’s largest food manufacturing companies which was sued in state court in Texas for trade secret misappropriation, interference with contract and related claims. Plaintiff requested more than $330 million in damages. After more than two weeks of trial, the jury awarded approximately $1 million, which was 10% of defendant’s pre-trial settlement offer. Americana Juice Imports, Inc. v. Nestle USA (Hidalgo County, Texas, C-2012-99-B1)
- Defended design company that was sued for misappropriation of trade secrets and confidential information. Plaintiff requested more than $2 million in damages. After a two week jury trial, the jury awarded just $47 thousand in damages. GMPC v. Walker (L.A.S.C. SC070564)
- Secured settlement in excess of $9 million the day before trial in an action for trademark infringement and related claims against the largest publicly traded health care company in the country. (Confidential Settlement)
- Defeated a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction in an action for trade secret misappropriation and unfair competition involving software and other trade secrets used to provide customer care in the automotive business. Secured a dismissal with prejudice of the entire action with no payment by client. Autobytel Inc. v. Newgen Results Corporation (O.C.S.C. 07CC02178)
- Secured a mid-six-figure settlement in a copyright and trademark infringement action related to pop-up displays used for a limited time period at grocery stores where the infringement occurred for a limited period of time, there was no actual damage, de minimis profits earned by the defendants, and all of the infringing products had been removed. Academy of Motion Pictures v. Albertson’s Inc., et al. (C.D.Cal. Case No. CV -01386-ABC-CW)
- Defended a former employee of plaintiff company in trade secret misappropriation and unfair competition case involving two Fortune 100 companies. We were retained after plaintiff had already obtained an ex parte writ of seizure of plaintiff’s confidential information from our client’s residence (which required our client to admit that he committed perjury in answering over one hundred questions under oath). We obtained a complete dismissal with prejudice and full release of the employee for payment of $2500. 3M v. Avery Dennison (Schaub) (O.C.S.C. Case No. 765983)
- Represented one of the largest food companies in the world in a copyright infringement action related to the design and purchase of a proprietary computer software system. Recovered all monies invested by the client in the software, plus attorney’s fees and costs. Nestle USA Inc v. Virtual Integration (C.D. Cal. CV-01144-DDP-E)
- Pursued counterfeiting claims on behalf of one of the oldest apparel companies in the country and won an emergency seizure order of counterfeit goods. Following a jury trial, obtained a judgment that was ten times the value of the counterfeit products sold by the defendant, plus attorney’s fees. Fruit of the Loom v. Mithawala, et al (C.D. Cal CV-03137-JMI)
- Pursued trademark infringement claims on behalf of one of the world’s largest food companies in a case involving the U.S. and international distribution of a food product and won an emergency seizure order of counterfeit goods and a $5 million judgment. Nestle Food Company v. Stoner & Company Inc. (C.D. Cal. CV-05179-HLH-MC)
- Defeated a seizure order sought by Microsoft Corporation against a distributor of computer hardware and software in a trademark and copyright action. Secured insurance coverage for the client which was used to defend the action and fund the settlement, including the payment of all attorney’s fees and costs of settlement. Microsoft Corp. v. Avus Systems & Per. (C.D. Cal. CV-01011-GLT–EE)
- Represented plaintiff in one of the first reported trademark decisions related to the use of domain names, and obtained an injunction requiring defendant to modify its domain name. Teletech Customer Care Management, Inc. v. Tele-Tech. Co., 977 F. Supp. 1407, 42 U.S.P.Q. 2d. 1913 (C.D. Cal. 1997)
- Obtained a preliminary injunction prohibiting the defendant from including plaintiff’s trademarks in defendant’s book, finding plaintiff had shown a likelihood of confusion, as to the source, sponsorship, or approval of the book. Nestle USA Inc. v. Heart to Heart Publishing Co., 1997 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 21334 (C.D. Cal. 1997)