Law of Cards: Leaf Files Claim for Attorneys' Fees Against Panini

Law of Cards: Leaf Files Claim for Attorneys’ Fees Against Panini

Panini and Leaf's battle over 750 signed Kevin Durant stickers has escalated. Fresh off its temporary restraining order victory, Leaf filed counterclaims against Panini. The most important point Leaf made is that it's seeking to have its attorneys’ fees paid by Panini.

Legal translation: Leaf thinks this case is a complete waste of time, especially its attorneys' billable time. So, Leaf wants Panini to pay its attorneys.

The crux of Leaf's arguments is that Panini cannot stop Leaf from owning and using these Durant stickers. Leaf alleges it lawfully bought the stickers on the secondary market months before Panini's exclusive contract with Durant. In view of this, Leaf alleges that Panini (and Durant) should not be able to create a contract later on that affects third parties that are not involved in the contract.

Barring the invention of time machines that is.

Leaf's argument sounds pretty good. It's just common sense: two parties should not be able to get together, sign a contract, and somehow affect the actions of something a third party already did.

Also, Panini's lawsuit is basically that these 750 stickers in Leaf's hands hurt the value of the contract Panini has with Durant. Panini, however, knew Leaf had these stickers months before they signed their deal with Durant. Arguably then, Panini negotiated the contract knowing these stickers may affect the contract value. Seems like an uphill battle to now argue the contract value is hurt by those same stickers.

If there isn't more to Panini's case, I think Leaf is in a good position here.

Panini will need to respond Leaf's counterclaim, so if there is more to the story, we’ll learn about it soon.

Click here to see Leaf's filing.

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Paul Lesko is a shareholder at Simmons Hanly Conroy and the chair of its Intellectual Property Department (http://www.simmonsfirm.com). Don’t hold the fact that Paul is a lawyer against him, he’s also a rabid baseball and college basketball fan, and an avid baseball card collector. Paul can be found on Twitter @Paul_Lesko and Google+.

User Comments

  1. Whsy does it take so long to get redemption cards redemed from Panini?

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