Copyright infringement—assessing additional damages in the IPEC

Copyright infringement—assessing additional damages in the IPEC

How did the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court (IPEC) deal with assessing compensatory and additional damages in a copyright infringement case relating to photographs? The IPEC’s recent ruling in Absolute Lofts v Artisan Home Improvements [2015] EWHC 2608 (IPEC) focuses on CDPA 1988, s 97(2) and how it interacts with art 13(1) of Directive 2004/48/EC, the Enforcement Directive, providing clarity on the UK’s approach to additional damages and the Enforcement Directive.

Briefly, what is the background to this dispute?

Absolute Lofts is a provider of loft conversions operating in the London area. Absolute Lofts has photographs of its completed loft conversions on its website taken by Mr Colton, the owner of the company. Artisan provided home improvements including loft conversions in the Bradford area. It used 21 images from Absolute Loft’s website on its own website.

Liability was admitted by Artisan and its owner (Mr Ludbrook), therefore the dispute centred on quantum of damages due to Absolute Lofts for infringement of the copyright in the 21 images.

What were the issues on quantum?

There were two issues which the court said needed to be resolved on quantum:

  1. the quantum of compensatory damages due to Absolute Lofts, which the parties agreed would be assessed based on the ‘user principle’
  2. whether Absolute Lofts was entitled to additional damages pursuant to the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988, s 97(2) (CDPA 1988) and, if so, how much—failing that, the court would deal with Absolute Lofts’ claim for damages under Directive 2004/48/EC on the enforcement of intellectual property rights, art 13(1) (the Enforcement Directive)

What were the damages awarded?

The sum of £300 was awarded for compensatory damages under the user principle. A further sum of £6,000 was awarded for additional damages under CDPA 1988, s 97(2) and also for unfair profits under the Enforcement Directive, art 13(1) but as these awards are not

Subscription Form

Related Articles:
Latest Articles:

Already a subscriber? Login
RELX (UK) Limited, trading as LexisNexis, and our LexisNexis Legal & Professional group companies will contact you to confirm your email address. You can manage your communication preferences via our Preference Centre. You can learn more about how we handle your personal data and your rights by reviewing our  Privacy Policy.

Access this article and thousands of others like it free by subscribing to our blog.

Read full article

Already a subscriber? Login