Steinbeck Case Clarifies Copyright Termination Right

Law360, New York (September 25, 2006, 12:00 AM EDT) -- On June 12, 2006, in one of the first federal court decisions ever to address the issue of "recapturing" copyright ownership, U.S. District Judge Richard Owen of New York’s Southern District awarded John Steinbeck’s two surviving blood heirs the right to terminate agreements under which the deceased novelist granted the copyrights in ten of his early works to the predecessor of counterclaim plaintiff the Penguin Group.

Judge Owen’s decision was based in part on certain provisions of the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act (CTEA), which...
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