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A popular college bar in Bloomington, Indiana is accused of non-payment of $12,000 to an intern who had been creating content for their social media accounts. The Complaint (below) details several months of promised, delayed, and ultimately unrealized paychecks.

The Complaint includes claims for declaratory judgment of copyright ownership and copyright infringement, but I assume that the intern is less interested in ownership of the bar’s social media content and more interested in getting paid for months of labor. The specific works alleged to have been infringed are not identified in the Complaint and there is no mention of registration of any works, a prerequisite for a copyright infringement claim, so the copyright claims could be vulnerable to challenge. As jurisdiction for the lawsuit is based on the copyright and declaratory judgment of copyright ownership claims, we might see an early battle over jurisdiction.

Ideally, the intern will just get paid what he is owed before lawyers for both sides get deep into researching and drafting motions. Stay tuned for updates.

Schwartz v. Kilroy’s North America, LLC et al

Case Number: 1:22-cv-01563-SEB-DML
File Date: August 5, 2022
Plaintiff: Elijah Schwartz
Plaintiff Counsel: Kimberly D. Jeselskis, B.J. Brinkerhoff, Hannah Kaufman Joseph of Jeselskis Kaufman and Joseph, LLC
Defendant: Kilroy’s North America, LLC, Kilroy’s Sports, LLC, Kilroy’s on Kirkwood, LLC
Cause: Violation of the Wage Payment Act, Breach of Contract, Promissory Estoppel, Unjust Enrichment, Fraud, Declaratory Judgment of Copyright Ownership, Copyright Infringement
Court: Southern District of Indiana
Judge: Sarah Evans Barker
Referred To: Debra McVicker Lynch