Supreme Court to Determine “Full Costs” Under Copyright Act

Snell & Wilmer

[co-author: Mark Webb]

On September 27, 2018, the Supreme Court of the United States granted certiorari in Oracle USA v. Rimini Street to resolve a split among the United States Circuit Courts of Appeals concerning costs awarded to a prevailing party under the Copyright Act. The Sixth, Seventh, and Ninth Circuits permit an award of “full costs” under 17 U.S.C. § 505 (Copyright Act) that is not limited by the six categories of taxable costs under 28 U.S.C.  § 1920. The Eighth and Eleventh Circuits do not permit additional costs, because the “full costs” language does not “clearly,” “explicitly,” or “plainly” show congressional intent to treat costs differently under the Copyright Act.

This decision may have a major impact on how parties assess the monetary risks of going to trial. At issue for Rimini Street is whether it must pay Oracle $12,774,550.26 in costs outside those recoverable under 28 U.S.C. § 1920. In Crawford Fitting Co. v. J.T. Gibbons, Inc. (1987) the Supreme Court held there must be “plain evidence” of congressional intent to supersede 28 U.S.C. § 1920. Now the Court will have the opportunity to determine if such evidence exists for 17 U.S.C. § 505.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Snell & Wilmer | Attorney Advertising

Written by:

Snell & Wilmer

Snell & Wilmer on:

Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:
*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.
Custom Email Digest
- hide
- hide

This website uses cookies to improve user experience, track anonymous site usage, store authorization tokens and permit sharing on social media networks. By continuing to browse this website you accept the use of cookies. Click here to read more about how we use cookies.