Prevailing Party Attorney's Fees

News & Analysis as of

Ninth Circuit Retires Fee-Award Standard, Imports Octane Fitness to Trademark Cases

This week, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit joined a majority of appellate courts that have rejected rigid tests for attorneys’-fees awards in favor of flexible discretion at the district court level. The...more

Ninth Circuit Extends Octane Fitness Attorneys’ Fee Analysis To Lanham Act Cases

In the 2014 case of Octane Fitness, LLC v. Icon Health & Fitness, Inc. (and a companion case), the Supreme Court articulated a standard for courts to use when deciding whether to award attorneys’ fees in patent cases. As we...more

The 9th Circuit Injects Some “Octane” into the Lanham Act Attorneys’ Fee Provision

In the immortal words of the most recent Nobel Laureate in literature, “the times they are a changin.’” Section 35(a) of the Lanham Act provides that “[t]he court in exceptional cases may award reasonable attorney fees to...more

Litigation Alert: Ninth Circuit Adopts Broader Octane Fitness Standard for Attorneys’ Fees Awards under the Lanham Act

On October 24, 2016, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit after an en banc rehearing in Sunearth, Inc. v. Sun Earth Solar Power Co., LTD., adopted the Octane Fitness standard for determining whether a case is...more

Octane Fitness and Highmark Apply to Ninth Circuit Attorney Fee Awards under the Lanham Act

On October 24, 2016, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, sitting en banc, held that district courts analyzing a request for attorney fees under the Lanham Act should consider the totality of the circumstances, as set forth in...more

Significant Change in Award of Attorneys’ Fees in Idaho Coming in 2017

On March 1, 2017, the standard for awarding attorneys’ fees in civil actions under Idaho Code § 12-121 will change significantly to allow attorneys’ fees in all civil actions “when justice so requires.” Hoffer v. Shappard,...more

New EAJA Decision in the DC Circuit

The Equal Access to Justice Act (EAJA) directs a court to award fees and other expenses to prevailing party in a civil action against the United States unless the government’s position was substantially justified or special...more

The Supreme Court Clarifies Standard For Attorney Fee Awards In Copyright Cases

Copyright infringement litigation has been on the rise in recent years, particularly in the Central District of California, with the apparel industry feeling the brunt of this uptick. In a typical case, a plaintiff alleges...more

MoFo IP Newsletter - August 2016

Supreme Court Abolished Federal Circuit's Test for Willfulness - On June 13, 2016, in Halo Electronics, Inc. v. Pulse Electronics, Inc., 579 U.S. ___ (2016), the Supreme Court unanimously abrogated the Federal Circuit’s...more

Kirtsaeng II: Fees in Copyright Cases Depend on Reasonableness of Litigation Position

Under 17 USC § 505, a “court may . . . award a reasonable attorney’s fee to the prevailing party.” However, when deciding whether to award attorneys’ fees under the Copyright Act’s fee-shifting provision, 17 USC § 505, the...more

Prevailing Parties in Land Use Litigation May Recover Attorney’s Fees for Preparation of Administrative Record

On July 28, 2016, in a case of first impression, the Court of Appeal for the Sixth Appellate District held that labor costs for attorneys and paralegals to prepare the administrative record in a land use case are recoverable...more

California Employment Law Notes - July 2016

Employer Is Entitled To Recover $4 Million In Attorney's Fees From EEOC - CRST Van Expedited, Inc. v. EEOC, 578 U.S. ___, 136 S. Ct. 1642 (2016) - The EEOC filed suit against CRST (a trucking company) alleging...more

Advertising Law - July 2016

Ad Company's Geotargeting Locates a $1M Penalty - InMobi, a Singapore-based mobile advertising company, will pay almost $1 million in civil penalties and implement a comprehensive privacy program to settle charges that...more

Intellectual Property Law - July 2016

Supreme Court: Status Quo in Cuozzo - Why it matters: On June 20, 2016, the Supreme Court decided Cuozzo Speed Technologies v. Lee, where it rejected challenges to the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) inter partes...more

Attorney Fee Awards In Unpaid Wages Cases – Court of Appeal Clarifies Who Is Entitled To Fees Under Statutory Fee Shifting...

On June 28, 2016, in Rogelio Ramos v. Manuel Garcia (“Ramos”) (Superior Court Case No. 37-2013-00037990-CU-OE-CTL), the Court of Appeal for the Fourth Appellate District reaffirmed that under Labor Code Section 218.5 an...more

Supreme Court Affirms Discretion to Award Fees in Copyright Suits, But Case Precedence Not Relevant

The Copyright Act states that the trial court “may…award” attorney’s fees to the prevailing party. Legal fees incurred by plaintiffs and defendants alike in copyright and other intellectual property cases can be staggering,...more

Busy Supreme Court Docket In Intellectual Property Highlighted By Cases On Enhanced Damages, Attorney's Fees, Claim Construction...

In June 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down a decision in Halo Electronics v. Pulse Electronics (14-1513), in which it addressed the Federal Circuit's test for determining whether enhanced damages should be awarded for...more

Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons Inc. - U.S. Supreme Court, June 16, 2016

U.S. Supreme Court holds “objective reasonableness” of losing party’s position is important factor but not controlling one in considering award of attorneys’ fees under Copyright Act. Graduate student Supap Kirtsaeng, a...more

Kirtsaeng II: Fees in Copyright Cases Depends on Reasonableness of Litigation Position

In Depth - Under 17 USC § 505, a “court may … award a reasonable attorney’s fee to the prevailing party.” However, when deciding whether to award attorneys’ fees under the Copyright Act’s fee-shifting provision, 17 USC...more

Supreme Court Provides Guidance on Attorneys’ Fees in Copyright Infringement Actions

On June 16, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court issued an opinion in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., to provide lower courts with guidance regarding the circumstances for awarding attorneys’ fees to a prevailing party in a...more

Supreme Court In Kirstaeng V Wiley: Objective Reasonableness Not Controlling For Attorney Fees

The case of Kirstaeng v. Wiley hit the headlines in 2013 when the Supreme Court held that importation and sale in the United States of books bought from the copyright owner in Thailand was not an infringement of copyright,...more

Supreme Court Provides Guidance on Discretionary Fee-Shifting in Copyright Cases

On June 16, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court clarified how courts should exercise their discretion to award attorneys' fees to the prevailing party in copyright cases. The Court unanimously held that courts should give...more

Copyright Flash Report: Attorneys' Fees and Pre-1972 Safe Harbor

Objective Reasonableness Must Receive “Substantial Weight” in Copyright Attorney-Fee Shifting Decisions:Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., No. 15-375 (U.S. June 16, 2016) - Kagan, J. In a unanimous decision, the...more

Litigation Alert: U.S. Supreme Court Addresses Attorney’s Fee Awards in Copyright Cases

Last week in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons Inc., the Supreme Court held that district courts have wide discretion to grant attorney’s fee awards but should give substantial weight to whether the losing party was objectively...more

High Court Eases Ability to Recover Enhanced Remedies in Patent and Copyright Cases

Within the past week, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down two unanimous rulings that could make it easier for prevailing parties in patent cases to recover enhanced damages and for winning parties in copyright cases to recover...more

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