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Zuk v. Eastern Pennsylvania Psychiatric Institute of the Medical College of Pennsylvania

United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
103 F.3d 294 (1996)


Dr. Gerald Zuk (plaintiff) was a former psychologist on the faculty of the Eastern Pennsylvania Psychiatric Institute (EPPI) (defendant). While on the faculty, Zuk conducted therapy sessions that were videotaped and maintained at EPPI. He later based a book on some of the interviews. In 1980, Zuk was placed on furlough from EPPI. He sought to obtain copies of the tapes from EPPI after his separation, with EPPI ignoring his requests and continuing to rent out the tapes. Several years passed with Zuk failing to pursue the issue. In 1994, he resumed attempting to obtain the tapes and brought suit in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania seeking their return. Benjamin Lipman (defendant) represented Zuk. EPPI brought a motion to dismiss the case, which was granted by the trial court. The court also granted EPPI’s motion for sanctions and attorney’s fees under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure (FRCP) 11, 17 U.S.C. § 505, and 28 U.S.C. § 1927. The district court granted the motions and held both Lipman and Zuk jointly and severally liable for $15,000 in fees and sanctions. Zuk eventually settled the claim against him for $6,250. Lipman appealed.

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