March 10, 2023 |

Kibler Fowler & Cave LLP Team Secures Dismissal of Copyright Infringement Claim

In a decisive victory for Kibler Fowler & Cave’s Entertainment and Intellectual Property Litigation practice group, the United States District Court for the Central District of California dismissed a second amended complaint without leave to amend against client The Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, one of Europe’s largest university hospitals.

Kibler Fowler & Cave LLP successfully obtained the dismissal of the copyright infringement action brought by Plaintiff MMAS Research against defendants The Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Smartpatient GmbH and My Therapy. The plaintiff alleged that the defendants violated licensing agreements with MMAS Research, which allow the use of a copyrighted diagnostic assessment protocol and certain derivative works. Plaintiff also asserted claims for breach of contract, copyright infringement and unfair competition under California Business and Professions Code.

On November 4, 2022, the Court granted The Charité’s motion to dismiss the first amended complaint, warning the plaintiff: “While there may be a Second Amended Complaint, there will be no Third.” See here. True to its word, on February 28, 2023, the Court dismissed plaintiff’s second amended complaint without leave to amend, noting that the plaintiff “was unable to allege any new information to overcome the Court’s prior determinations and further amendment therefore appears futile, especially given [the copyright owner’s] clear intention not to be involved in this action.” The Court found that MMAS did not meet its burden to prove that the copyright claim should be in federal court as it failed to establish standing to sue for copyright infringement and the Court’s jurisdiction over alleged infringements that occurred entirely outside of the United States. Without a federal claim, the Court declined to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over plaintiff’s remaining state law claims.

This victory is significant for The Charité and other high profile medical research institutions that have been repeatedly sued by plaintiff MMAS for infringement of the same copyrights at issue in this case. The Court determined that MMAS does not own many of the copyrights it has been asserting against The Charité and other parties in various other actions.

The KF&C team is comprised of Partner John Fowler, Senior Associate Kevin Cammiso, Associate Zien Halwani, and Paralegal Praveeta Garcia.

The Court’s decision can be found here.


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