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Trademark Case Transferred to Southern District of Florida

American Academy of Implant Dentristry v. American Dental Implant Association, 12-CV-2935, Slip Op. (N.D. Ill. Jan. 22, 2013)(Zagel)

Judge Zagel recited the 7th Circuit’s traditional test for determining whether a motion to transfer should be granted, in deciding to grant a motion to transfer to the Southern District of Florida.  In particular, Judge Zagel considered (1) the plaintiff’s choice of forum, (2) the situs of material events; (3) the relative ease of access to sources of proof; (4) the convenience of witnesses; and (5) the convenience of the parties.  Per the Court, “[t]he plaintiff’s choice of forum generally is given substantial weight when it is the district in which the plaintiff resides.”

In this case, the Defendant’s contacts with Illinois were tenuous at best, and the Court observed that personal jurisdiction over the Defendant would “by no means be assured.”  Based on this, the Court determined the factors merited transfer.

Plaintiff’s Attorneys Ordered to Pay Defendants Attorneys’ Fees in Copyright Case

Design Ideas v. The Yankee Candle Company, 10-CV-3217, Slip. Op. (C.D. Ill. Jan. 11, 2013)(McCuskey)

Design Ideas had originally sued the Yankee Candle Company for copyright infringement over glass sculptures sold by both parties.  The Copyright Office had previously determined that plaintiff’s sculptures were not entitled to copyright protection.  To make matters worse, plaintiff had alleged that it held a valid copyright registration.

The Court determined that, given that defendant had prevailed in the underlying case, it was entitled to its attorneys fees.  In addition, given the misrepresentation by both plaintiff and plaintiff’s counsel regarding the registration, at least some of these fees were to come from plaintiff’s attorneys.  Accordingly, plaintiff’s counsel were ordered to pay $10,000 of the $118,305 fee award, and were held jointly liable with plaintiff for another $10,000.