Auction House Secures Dismissal of Resale Royalty Act Suit

On behalf of Christie's, Inc., Skadden secured the dismissal with prejudice of a class action in which several prominent artists or their representatives had sought to enforce the California Resale Royalty Act, California Civil Code Section 986(a). On April 11, Judge Michael W. Fitzgerald of the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California entered judgement in favor of the auction house, holding that the Resale Royalty Act is preempted by the Copyright Act of 1976, the plaintiffs' claim for punitive damages fails, and the "Estate of Robert Graham" has no capacity to sue.