Friday, January 29, 2010

Interpreting license agreements can be tricky

As seen in the diverging opinions by Judge SCHALL (majority) and Judge BRYSON (dissent) in Lawler v. Bradley, determining the meaning of provisions in licenses can be tricky, yielding consequences which are not foreseeable.

From the dissent:

Because the License Agreement merely required written notice requesting payment of royalties in order to
provide notice of default, that letter was sufficient.

The letter of Lawler to the licensee was not well-drafted and ended up
costing Lawler. As the dissent noted:

Although Lawler’s efforts to give notice of default and notice of termination were
inelegant, they were sufficient to satisfy the requirements of the agreement.


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