Viacom Denied Legal Fees In Gibson Ukulele IP Dispute

Law360, New York (July 19, 2013, 3:22 PM EDT) -- A California federal judge Thursday blocked Viacom International Inc.'s attempt to collect attorneys' fees in a suit alleging that ukuleles featuring SpongeBob SquarePants infringed Gibson Guitar Corp.'s “Flying V” trademark design, ruling that Gibson's action had merit.

In denying Viacom's request for $56,100 in legal fees, U.S. District Judge Dean G. Pregerson was unconvinced by Viacom's argument that Gibson's infringement litigation was groundless and should be considered an “exceptional” case warranting the granting of fees.

“There is no evidence that Gibson pursued its claims against Viacom...
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