MJ related lawsuit updates – April 2017
This is a list about MJ related lawsuits. I added short summary of case description and latest developments in each case for ease of following. I will be updating this list every few months.
MJ Estate v. IRS (Link)
Description:This lawsuit is about the estate tax dispute. IRS is demanding $731 Million in estate tax. MJ Estate challenged IRS by filing a lawsuit.
Latest developments: After participating in settlement talks for over a year, parties settled majority of the minor valuation disputes. Only remaining issues were valuation of Sony/ATV catalog, MIJAC catalog and image and likeliness. Trial happened on February 2017. Right after the trial Estate have filed a motion to strike testimony and reports of IRS's main expert. Filing on this issue will be completed by mid May 2017, followed by judge's ruling some time after that. There will also be post trial briefings and the judge's final ruling could take a year or even more.
Noval Williams Films v. MJ Estate (Link)
Description: This is a dispute about “Last Photo Shoot” documentary. The documentary uses footage from two photo shoots from 2007. It also includes some photos. Estate believes some content are owned by MJ and MJ didn’t give consent for release of the footage. Noval Williams is seeking a declaratory relief that they aren’t infringing copyrights.
Latest developments: Case is ongoing at New York court. Parties engaged in settlement talks for several months, however it looks like settlement talks have failed. Later parties experienced a discovery dispute. Noval Williams have turned over some emails redacted and Estate wanted the unredacted versions. Judge ruled that Noval Williams need to produce some of the emails unredacted. Estate is planning to file a summary judgment in this case. Motions for summary judgment is scheduled to be filed between April and June 2017, followed by judge's ruling some time after that.