Lewis Brisbois Secures Dismissal for Universal Music Group, Def Jam, and Rick Ross in IP Music Case Brought By 'Vexatious Litigant'

Atlanta, Ga. (August 19, 2020) - Atlanta Partner Leron E. Rogers and Ft. Lauderdale Partner Vincent F. Alexander, along with Atlanta Associate John T. Rose and Ft. Lauderdale Associate Dylan M. Fulop recently secured the dismissal of a copyright infringement matter brought against firm clients Universal Music Group, Island Def Jam Group, and Rick Ross.

The plaintiff in this matter, who had previously been designated as a “vexatious litigant” in several districts, alleged that Lewis Brisbois’ clients unlawfully “used the same ‘original works of authorship’” that he used in one of his songs. In his complaint, the plaintiff included claims of copyright infringement, conversion, tortious interference with business relations, and tortious interference with contract. We filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit, and the plaintiff filed a response. 

The U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida concluded that it lacked general jurisdiction over Universal Music Group, which it noted had its principal place of business in Santa Monica, California. The court also pointed out that the plaintiff failed to address personal jurisdiction altogether in his response to our motion. Accordingly, it dismissed the plaintiff’s complaint for lack of personal jurisdiction and also as a “shotgun complaint.”

Mr. Alexander is a member of Lewis Brisbois’ Bankruptcy & Insolvency and Complex Business & Commercial Litigation Practices. He has extensive experience in bankruptcy reorganizations and liquidations, out-of-court restructurings, asset sales, and bankruptcy and insolvency-related litigation.

Mr. Fulop is a member of Lewis Brisbois’ Complex Business & Commercial Litigation Practice. His practice focuses on commercial business disputes, representing clients in both federal and state courts.

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