Chris Brown and Drake are off the hook for a lawsuit filed by a nightclub that was the unexpected host to the two brawling in June 2012.
The $16 million lawsuit brought by the trademark holder of NYC's Greenhouse nightclub was thrown out of court Monday. A judge stated that Brown and Drake had "no duty to the club to behave," especially since the fight occurred at the adjacent W.i.P nightclub, reports TMZ.
The lesson here: Even when celebrities like Chris Brown and Drake are behaving badly, it doesn't always amount to a legal injury.
Who Sued Drake and Brown?
This case is somewhat confusing because of the facts, but here are the basics:
- Drake and Chris Brown were alleged to have had a bottle-throwing fight at W.i.P. nightclub, which is adjacent to Greenhouse.
- Greenhouse's trademark is owned by Entertainment Enterprises.
- Entertainment Enterprises sued Drake and Brown for damages to Greenhouse's reputation based on their fight at W.i.P.
So the generically named Entertainment Enterprises (EE) was the plaintiff in this $16 million case. And although the big throw-down between Drake and Chris didn't even occur on their property, EE felt their proximity to the conflict "cost them a lot of money," reports TMZ.
Trademark Holder's Interests
Legally speaking, trademark holders like EE hold the legal interest in a name, symbol, or "mark" which is used to distinguish a product or service from others and identifies its source.
EE's trademark in "Greenhouse" entitles it to sue for infringement or dilution of that copyright. But in this case, EE sued for gross negligence, claiming that a potential business deal was nixed after bad publicity from the fight hit the media.
No Clear Duty
Defendants who are found guilty of negligence must be found to have breached a duty to the plaintiff, which then caused that person some form of calculable damage.
Chris Brown and Drake may have caused damage and breached a duty to the W.i.P. nightclub during their glass-breaky bash, but there is no clear duty for Brown and Drake to protect EE from negative publicity, the judge ruled.
Additionally, the judge reminded EE that nightclub fights are not at all uncommon, so EE "can't just sue whenever a fight happens," reports TMZ.
- Chris Brown and Drake $16 Million Nightclub Brawl Lawsuit Dismissed (TheDrop.fm)
- Proving Fault: What is Negligence? (FindLaw)
- Trademarks Basics FAQ (FindLaw)
- Drake-Chris Brown Nightclub Greenhouse Sues NYC for Shutting it Down (FindLaw's Celebrity Justice)