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Hobbs v. John et al

June 19, 2012

HOBBS
v.
JOHN ET AL



Name of Assigned Judge Sitting Judge if Other or Magistrate Judge Amy J. St. Eve than Assigned Judge

CASE TITLE

DOCKET ENTRY TEXT

The Court denies Movant's motion to intervene [9].

O [ For further details see text below.] Docketing to mail notices.

STATEMENT

Before the Court is Gino Romano's motion to intervene in an action Plaintiff Guy Hobbs filed against Defendants Elton John, Bernard John Taupin, and Big Pig Music Ltd. (collectively, the "Defendants") alleging copyright infringement, constructive trust, and accounting. See 17 U.S.C. § 101, et seq . For the reasons set forth below, the Court denies Romano's motion to intervene.

BACKGROUND

Hobbs filed his Complaint against Defendants on April 26, 2012 claiming copyright infringement, constructive trust, and accounting. (R. 1, Compl. ¶ 1.) Specifically, Hobbs alleges that he wrote lyrics to a song titled "Natasha" and that Big Pig took these lyrics and substantially reproduced them in Elton John's song "Nikita." ( Id . ¶¶ 9-11, 22.) As a result of "Nikita's" popular success, Defendants purportedly "received money and profits that rightly belonged to [Hobbs]." ( Id. ¶ 39.) In his motion to intervene, Romano alleges that the lyrics to Hobbs' song "Natasha" were in his diary and that Elton John stole Romano's diary from him. (R. 9, Mov.'s Mot. to Intervene.) Thus, Romano moves to intervene to protect his alleged interest in the "Natasha" lyrics.

Courtroom Deputy KF

Initials:

LEGAL STANDARD

Romano seeks to intervene under Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 24(a)(2) or, alternatively, 24(b). "There are four requirements for intervention of right under [Rule] 24(a)," including "(1) timeliness, (2) an interest relating to the subject matter of the main action, (3) at least potential impairment of that interest if the action is resolved without the intervenor, and (4) lack of adequate representation by existing parties." Reid L. v. Illinois State Bd. Of Educ., 289 F.3d 1009, 1017 (7th Cir. 2002) (citations omitted). "The burden is on the party seeking to intervene of right to show that all four criteria are met." Id. "The failure to meet any one of the factors dictates a denial of the petition." Reich v. ABC/York-Estes Corp., 64 F.3d 316, 321 (7th Cir. 1995). "In addition, we must accept as true the non-conclusory allegations of the motion." Id.

The relevant portion of Rule 24(b) states: "On timely motion, the court may permit anyone to intervene who: (A) is given a conditional right to intervene by a federal statute; or (B) has a claim or defense that shares with the main action a common question of law or fact." Fed.R.Civ.P. 24(b)(1). "Rule 24(b) vests district courts with considerable discretion when deciding whether to permit interventions by third parties seeking to protect their interests in a particular action." Griffith v. Univ. Hosp., LLC, 249 F.3d 658, 661-62 (7th Cir. 2001) (quotations omitted). ...


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