Chicago Bldg. Design P.C. v. Mongolian House, Inc.
Case #: 12-C1010
Full Text Opinion: http://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=14157595054675561391
Copyright: A claim for copyright infringement must be brought within 3 years of a party receiving notice (actual or inquiry) of a completed claim.
Opinion (Bucklo): Chicago Building Design brought suit against Mongolian House for violating its copyright in an architectural blueprint. Mongolian moved to dismiss, claiming that the three-year statute of limitations for copyright infringement required Chicago to bring its action by the end of 2011. Because it waited to file until early 2012, Mongolian argued, Chicago’s claim was untimely. Chicago responded by arguing that its filing was timely because it did not have actual notice of the infringement until May 8, 2009, bringing its claim within the statutory period. The district court disagreed, stating that actual notice was not required and that Chicago was put on inquiry notice when one of its employees observed a Mongolian employee attempting to obtain copies of the blueprint from the City of Chicago in 2008. The district court also rejected Chicago’s continuing violation argument, because Chicago had failed to explain why it had to wait until after Mongolian’s post-2008 actions in order to sue, or how Mongolian’s actions after 2008 constituted copyright infringement. Because Chicago could was unable to present an argument justifying its delay in filing suit, or establishing a right to sue grounded in Mongolian’s actions within the statutory period, the district court DISMISSED its copyright infringement claims.