Law of Cards: Schedule Released for Beckett v. The Card Collector

Law of Cards: Schedule Released for Beckett v. The Card Collector

Much to my surprise, the Beckett v. Custom Plush Production Inc.'s (aka The Card Collector) case is still plugging along.

This is the case where Beckett alleged The Card Collector accessed Beckett's pricing guides through the Beckett website and unlawfully "scraped" Beckett's copyrightable checklist and pricing data. Allegedly, The Card Collector offered Beckett's card checklists, grading and pricing data on its own website and through a CD-ROM it sold to others. The Card Collector denied Beckett's allegations and filed a counterclaim for attorneys' fees. The Card Collector also contends that Beckett's checklist and pricing data is not copyrightable.

I initially believed this case would wrap up quickly.

It hasn't.

In fact, if you believe the parties' jointly filed proposed schedule, it might continue until next summer.

While most of the parties' proposed dates are boring (who cares when experts need to be disclosed), the interesting dates are March 27, 2015 (when the parties will file dispositive motions that will give us good insight into each party's evidence) and a proposed trial date of July 18, 2015.

While it might appear from the outside that this case is moving slowly, it's actually a fast schedule. With trial less than a year away, there's a lot for the parties (and their hourly billable attorneys) to do such as collect evidence, review the other side's evidence, conduct depositions, hire experts, prepare dispositive motions, prepare expert reports, prepare for trial, etc.

All of this will cost a lot.

Given this, regardless of the parties' posturing, this case should wrap up well before trial. There's not enough money to justify the fees and expenses to take this one to trial. And although there is a chance either side could win attorneys' fees…that's normally a long shot.

The schedule does consider a best chance for this case wrapping up on April 25, 2015, when the case is scheduled for "further settlement negotiations." This'll likely take place with a third-party mediator, who, if this case is still mistakenly going on this long, should hopefully grind on both parties and convince them to settle.

It should settle before then, however. Hopefully by November, which will give both sides a few months of attorneys' bills to pay.

The information provided in Paul Lesko's "Law of Cards" column is not intended to be legal advice, but merely conveys general information related to legal issues commonly encountered in the sports industry. This information is not intended to create any legal relationship between Paul Lesko, Simmons Hanly Conroy or any attorney and the user. Neither the transmission nor receipt of these website materials will create an attorney-client relationship between the author and the readers.

The views expressed in the "Law of Cards" column are solely those of the author and are not affiliated with Simmons Hanly Conroy. You should not act or rely on any information in the "Law of Cards" column without seeking the advice of an attorney. The determination of whether you need legal services and your choice of a lawyer are very important matters that should not be based on websites or advertisements.

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Paul Lesko is a shareholder at Simmons Hanly Conroy and the chair of its Intellectual Property Department ( 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. Just another reason I hate Beckett and will never use them again. Pissing off the hobby.

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