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Civil Procedure Keyed to Rowe
Gasperini v. Center for Humanities, Inc.
Citation:518 U.S. 415 (1996)
Gasperini (Plaintiff) was a journalist for CBS News who provided his original color transparencies from his work in Central America to The Center for Humanities, Inc. (Defendant) for use in an educational videotape. The Center agreed to return the original transparencies, but could not find them upon completion of the project. Gasperini sued the Center in federal district court in New York. Gasperini won a jury verdict of $450,000 in damages, but on appeal, the Second Circuit invoked the New York state law CLPR § 5501(c), which empowers appellate courts to review a jury’s award of damages when it “deviates materially from what would be reasonable compensation.” The Second Circuit set aside the jury’s verdict and ordered a new trial. The U.S. Supreme Court granted certiorari.
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