The United States Supreme Court recently denied certiorari in Johannsongs-Publishing, Ltd. v. Peermusic Ltd., et al, bringing an end to a copyright infringement suit relating to Josh Groban’s 2003 song You Raise Me Up. Notably, in declining to hear a challenge to the Ninth Circuit’s ruling that Groban’s song did not constitute infringement, the Court left in place a circuit split as to the applicable test for assessing substantial similarity between two works of authorship.
The Sixth Circuit has joined the Second and Ninth Circuits in their broad interpretation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act’s (TCPA) autodialer provision. In doing so, it has tipped the scale in a circuit split that is ripe for review by the U.S. Supreme Court.
A recent Ninth Circuit decision centered on something most consumers use many times every day: smartphone apps.
On Friday, March 22, a split panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals found that a company with no direct contractual relationship with independent contractors could be found vicariously liable for the actions of those contractors in a class action suit. The majority held that ratification may create an agency relationship when none existed before, and that a reasonable jury could have found the defendant, owners of billions of dollars in student loan debt, vicariously liable for violations of third party debt collectors. The holding in Henderson potentially could have widespread agency law ramifications, especially when it comes to Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) violations.