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Experience Hendrix, LLC v. Hendrixlicensing.com, Ltd.

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
762 F.3d 829, 14 Cal. Daily Op. Serv. 9010 (2014)


Facts

Experience Hendrix, LLC (plaintiff) sued Andrew Pitsicalis and his company, Hendrixlicensing.com (defendants) for trademark infringement. The jury returned a verdict over $1.7 million, which included $60,000 worth of profits that Pitsicalis made, plus damages for profits that Experience Hendrix lost and harm to its image and goodwill. The trial judge found the damages for lost profits speculative and duplicative of the profits that Pitsicalis made, even though undisputed evidence showed that Experience Hendrix’s revenue from similar products dropped significantly while Pitsicalis was licensing infringing merchandise. The trial court also found the evidence did not support damages for harm to Experience Hendrix’s image and goodwill. As a result, the trial judge reduced the verdict and entered judgment as a matter of law (JMOL) for just $60,000. In the alternative, in the event that the appellate court reversed the judgment as a matter of law, the trial court granted a new trial on the ground that the damages contradicted the great weight of the evidence. Both sides appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Ebel, J.)

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