Two lawyers go after Westlaw and LexisNexis for copyright infringment

February 27, 2012 Two US lawyers are suing Westlaw and LexisNexis, with the audacious claim that the legal database providers have breached copyright by copying publicly filed briefs, motions and other legal documents.

Edward L. White and Kenneth Elan claim that these documents are protected by copyright and are owned by the attorneys and law firms who authored them. They allege that the database companies have made huge profits from selling access to the legal documents without obtaining permission from the authors.

White and Elan have filed in Manhattan federal court, and are hoping to represent two classes of lawyers: those who have obtained copyright registration of their works and those who haven’t done so.

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