Paparazzi “leaks” case sent to arbitration
The Paparazzi “leaks” case has been stayed pending the outcome of ordered arbitration proceedings.
Objections to compelled arbitration were overruled as per an April 3rd order.
Paparazzi filed suit back in May 2022 in an attempt to stop leaking of sensitive business information.
Named defendants in the suit were Geraldine Souza, Kylee Robinette, Morgan Ferguson, Jennifer Dyer, Jaime Robinson, Jennifer Carrolm Kimberly Drewry and ex-employee Melissa Sorenson.
Back in January Sorenson, Robinette and Dyer settled with Paparazzi.
By order of the court, the remaining defendants have been compelled to enter into arbitration proceedings.
In handing down its April 3rd order, the court found that Paparazzi initiating proceeds against the defendants didn’t constitute waivering the arbitration provision in Paparazzi’s Consultant Agreement.
The mere fact that Paparazzi brought suit does not evince an intent to waive the right to compel arbitration.
The Paparazzi Parties initially brought suit requesting injunctive relief to protect their intellectual property.
The arbitration provision specifically carved out the ability for Paparazzi to seek this type of injunctive relief.
Thus, filing an action allowed by the terms of the arbitration provision is not inconsistent with the right to arbitrate.
Other arguments raised against compelling arbitration were also shot down.
As I understand it, arbitration proceedings will apply both to Paparazzi’s lawsuit and counterclaims filed by Souza, Carol and Robinson.
The Paparazzi Parties cannot avoid the terms of the arbitration provision any more than the Souza Parties.
As a result of the arbitration order, the court also ordered the entire case stayed pending the outcome.
The case may be reopened upon motion by any party after the completion of arbitration.
There is no timeline for completion of arbitration proceedings. I’ll keep an eye on the case docket for updates.
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