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Copyrights Entertainment and Sports Law Litigation

9th Circuit Says End Steinbeck Copyright Fight

In a nearly half-century-long legal dispute over the rights to John Steinbeck’s works, the Ninth Circuit affirmed a district court‘s $5 million compensatory damages award against the author’s daughter-in-law but vacated punitive damages against the heir.

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In a nearly half-century-long legal dispute over the rights to John Steinbeck’s works, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit affirmed a district court‘s $5 million compensatory damages award against the author’s daughter-in-law but vacated punitive damages against the heir. Kaffaga v. Estate of Steinbeck, 18-55336. The Ninth Circuit told Steinbeck‘s family to stop making the same arguments in court over the enforceability of a 1983 agreement that designated family members’ controlling rights to Steinbeck’s books, which have been contested ever since his 1968 death.

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