Mail Service on Foreign Parties Allowed

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously in late May that the Hague Service Convention does not bar a U.S. litigant from using the mail to serve process on a party in another country that, like the U.S., has ratified the Convention, unless that foreign country specifically has objected to such mail service.  Water Splash, Inc. […]


“The common law is a growing tree,” a 19th Century Pennsylvania judge wrote. “Its principles must be continually adapted to new facts, and the changing conditions of modern life.”[1]   Technology has been a frequent changer of modern life.  The New York Court of Appeals recently had to reconcile  technology and the common law in Flo […]

New Federal Trade Secret Right Created

With President Obama’s signature on May 11, 2016 of the Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016 (“DTSA”), a new intellectual property right under federal law came into existence in the United States.   The statute, passed almost unanimously in both houses of Congress, creates one particularly powerful ex parte seizure remedial option in limited circumstances.  The Act’s […]

Defining Occurence In Insurance Policies

A basic risk management tool for just about any kind of organization is its liability insurance coverage.  Despite its ubiquity, however, some fairly basic provisions of a liability insurance policy, such as its definition of an occurrence, can still yield unpleasant surprises,

The New York Commercial Division Adds New Rules

The Commercial Division of New York’s Supreme Court turned 20 in 2015, an occasion marked by a conference and accompanying booklet on its accomplishments (link here:, and, in the last few weeks, by a 12-minute video birthday card of sorts (you can watch it at, using the password Justice). But lest you think […]

Ninth Circuit: “Fair Use ” Doctrine Must be Weighed Before DMCA Take-Down

You’ve just posted a too-cute video of your 13-month-old son bopping to a song (“Let’s Go Crazy” by Prince, as he then was) on YouTube.  It gets a couple of hundred views and then YouTube pulls it down– because Universal Music, in charge of playing copyright cop for the song, filed a takedown notification under […]

California Resale Royalty Act Can’t Apply Outside California

The major art auction houses’ spring sales in New York yielded a record US$2.5 billion in May, but not one penny of it will go to artists as resale royalties under California’s nearly 40-year-old Resale Royalty Act. On May 7, the en banc U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

Fewer Bites at the Apple for Trademark Registration Issues?

A party usually gets one chance to establish or dispute a claim, and then one chance to appeal as of right.  The application of that rule in a late March decision from the U.S. Supreme Court has trademark lawyers re-thinking the interplay between proceedings before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) and federal courts […]