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IP Alert: Supreme Court to Decide Copyright Costs Dispute

September 28, 2018

Yesterday the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear Rimini Street, Inc. v. Oracle USA, Inc., a copyright case in which the lower court awarded over $12 million in non-taxable costs to prevailing party Oracle. “Taxable” costs are those costs that are specified in the federal statutes that authorize cost awards. The Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit affirmed the award of these non-taxable costs. Other circuit courts have not allowed the award of non-taxable costs to the prevailing party in copyright cases, limiting the award of costs to the specifically identified taxable costs.

Rimini Street sought, and the Court granted, a writ of certiorari on the following question:

“Whether the Copyright Act’s allowance of ‘full costs’ (17 U.S.C. § 505) to a prevailing party is limited to taxable costs under 28 U.S.C. §§ 1920 and 1821, as the Eighth and Eleventh Circuits have held, or also authorizes non-taxable costs, as the Ninth Circuit holds.”

Fitch Even will report once the Court has issued a decision in this case.

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