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Injunctions and Impounding Explained

Injunctions and Impounding Explained

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Injunctions and Impounding Explained

When an author of a creative work discovers that his or her work has been infringed upon in violation of the laws of intellectual property, he or she has the right to file a civil lawsuit against the infringing party. 

What is an Injunction?


Once the court proceedings begin, the judge will usually force an injunction on the defending party. An injunction is a court order enforced by any court holding jurisdiction over the defending party which forces the party to cease all illegal activity of infringement. This prevents any further damage from being caused to the plaintiff's original work.

Even if the defendant ends up winning the infringement case and is permitted to continue with the accused actions, an injunction is still necessary as a courtesy to the plaintiff who believes their work is being misrepresented and damaged. At the end of the case, the injunction is either lifted, or further enforced, depending on the outcome of the case.

What is Impounding?

At any time during a pending court case for copyright infringement, a court may order the impounding of all material which has been manufactured by the violating party and any tools used to create the illegal material, such as molds, masters, tapes, film negatives, or any other such articles. In addition, all records produced pertaining to the creation or selling of said illegal materials, such as receipts or bills, may be required to come under the custody of the court.

If the records are seized by the court through impounding, all appropriate protective actions are enforced to ensure the defending party's privacy in all confidential records. Once such materials have been impounded, the final judgment of the court may order their destruction. This includes all materials which have been involved in the illegal violation of copyright law.

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