If you're a creator, meaning that you "create" art, music, writing, etc., you should absolutely consider hiring a copyright attorney. However, be wary of hiring just anyone. Not all attorneys are well versed in copyright law. Nor are all attorneys experienced in helping clients enforce their rights against those who are infringing upon their copyrighted creations. As such, today we'll discuss five key things you should consider before hiring a copyright attorney in Raleigh to handle your copyright enforcement case.
Does Your Attorney Have Copyright Expertise?
Before you hire a copyright attorney in Raleigh, make sure that the attorney in question has relevant and extensive copyright law experience. While you (or your family or best friend) may "know a guy," that doesn't necessarily mean that the lawyer has the right experience to handle the case.
For that matter, even attorneys who specialize in intellectual property law may have more experience in trademark or patent law, rather than copyright law; so, make sure that when you are interviewing attorneys that you ask specifically about the lawyer's experience with copyright enforcement and infringement.
Be Wary of a Bragging Attorney
It's one thing to hire a copyright attorney in Raleigh who has extensive experience in copyright law, but no one wants to hire an attorney who openly brags about the number of copyright cases they've filed in the past month/year, etc. This type of behavior is usually indicative of someone who files claims without first contacting the opposing party to negotiate a settlement. An attorney with a high volume of cases may not be able to give your case the attention it deserves.
Look for a copyright attorney who has a strong history of achieving settlements outside of court. We find that if you can negotiate a settlement prior to filing a complaint, you can also avoid many (if not all) of the costs associated with litigation.
Do Your Research
Building on the previous point, not only should you be wary of an attorney who likes to brag about how many cases he or she has filed recently, but you should also be wary of anyone who files frivolous claims or makes frivolous arguments. These types of attorneys can be subject to Rule 11 Sanctions by the court.
What is Rule 11?
Rule 11 of the Rules of Civil Procedure states that, by signing a pleading or “other paper” (motion, subpoena, etc.) related to the litigation, the attorney certifies that, to the best of his knowledge, information, and belief formed after reasonable inquiry it is well grounded in fact and is warranted by existing law or a good faith argument for the extension, modification, or reversal of existing law, and that it is not interposed for any improper purpose, such as to harass or to cause unnecessary delay or needless increase in the cost of litigation.
In short, you should avoid any attorney or law firm who has ever been sanctioned or threatened to be sanctioned by the court. So, do your research!
Is Taking The Next Steps Worth The Effort?
Before hiring a copyright attorney in Raleigh, and decided whether to bring any sort of copyright enforcement action into play, you must always consider the possibility of losing your case. In the event that you lose, you could end up paying the opposing party's attorney fees (even if your attorney did the work pro bono or low bono).
As such, before hiring an attorney to handle your copyright infringement case, make sure that you have a real case based on a reasonable claim. If we think for any reason that your case does not have enough evidence to support your claim, we'll make sure to tell you up front so that you know what you're getting into.
Is Your Copyright Attorney in Raleigh the Right Fit For You?
So, you've found a copyright attorney in Raleigh who seems to check all the right boxes, but are they the right fit for you and your specific needs? We know that people have different work styles. Just because managed to get on a highly recommended attorney's meeting list doesn't necessarily mean that they are the right fit for you. As such, make sure that when you're looking for referrals from friends, colleagues, family members, or other creators, that you ask questions that will guide you to an attorney who will not only do great work, but that you'll actually enjoy working with. Knowing the difference between the two is essential.
ELDRETH LAW FIRM | RALEIGH COPYRIGHT LAWYER
Hiring a Raleigh copyright lawyer is, after all, up to you. But, if you choose to talk with one of our attorneys feel free to contact us at any time. We are here to help you. Call now to learn more.