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Property Keyed to Merrill
Songbyrd, Inc. v. Estate of Grossman
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*Case Brief Anatomy includes: Brief Prologue, Complete Case Brief, Brief Epilogue
- The Brief Prologue provides necessary case brief introductory information and includes:
- Topic: Identifies the topic of law and where this case fits within your course outline.
- Parties: Identifies the cast of characters involved in the case.
- Procedural Posture & History: Shares the case history with how lower courts have ruled on the matter.
- Case Key Terms, Acts, Doctrines, etc.: A case specific Legal Term Dictionary.
- Case Doctrines, Acts, Statutes, Amendments and Treatises: Identifies and Defines Legal Authority used in this case.
- The Case Brief is the complete case summarized and authored in the traditional Law School I.R.A.C. format. The Pro case brief includes:
- Brief Facts: A Synopsis of the Facts of the case.
- Rule of Law: Identifies the Legal Principle the Court used in deciding the case.
- Facts: What are the factual circumstances that gave rise to the civil or criminal case? What is the relationship of the Parties that are involved in the case. Review the Facts of this case here:
Around the 1970s, Henry Roeland Byrd, a musician,composed several master recordings of his performances. Byrd produced the recordings in a Louisiana studio. Later 1972, the recordings were transferred from a predecessor in interest to Bearsville Records, Inc. (“Bearsville”) in New York. In 1986, Bearsville licensed the recordings to Rounder Records Corporation (“Rounder”). Thereafter, in 1987, Rounderannounced an album. Additionally, in 1991, Rounder announced another album under a licensing agreement with Bearsville. At that time, Byrd’s representatives requested that Rounder return of the recordings several times. In 1995, Songbyrd, Inc. (“Plaintiff”) brought suit against Albert B. Grossman’s estate, doing business as Bearsville,in Louisiana state court, requesting damages and for the court to declare Plaintiff rights to the recordings. Bearsville removed the case to the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, andmotioned to dismiss because the case was time barred and there was a lack of personal jurisdiction. Subsequently, Louisiana district court granted the motion to dismiss on the grounds that the case was time barred. Plaintiff appealed the district court’s decision to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. The appellate court reversed the trial court’s order on the grounds that the claim was not time barred. On remand, the district court held that there was a lack of personal jurisdiction and transferred the case to the United States District Court for the Northern District of New York. Subsequently, the New York district court determined whether the statute of limitations for conversion ran at the time of conversion, as illustrated inSporn v. MCA Records, Inc.,448 N.E.2d 1324 (N.Y. 1983). Plaintiff alleged that the statute of limitations was triggered when a plaintiff demands the defendant to return property and the defendant refuses to return the property, as described inSolomon R. Guggenheim Foundation v. Lubell,569 N.E.2d 426 (N.Y. 1991). Bearsville motioned to dismiss the case.
- Issue(s): Lists the Questions of Law that are raised by the Facts of the case.
- Holding: Shares the Court's answer to the legal questions raised in the issue.
- Concurring / Dissenting Opinions: Includes valuable concurring or dissenting opinions and their key points.
- Reasoning and Analysis: Identifies the chain of argument(s) which led the judges to rule as they did.
- The Brief Prologue closes the case brief with important forward-looking discussion and includes:
- Policy: Identifies the Policy if any that has been established by the case.
- Court Direction: Shares where the Court went from here for this case.