Pearson Educ., Inc. v. Almgren, No. 11-2723 (8th Cir. 2012)Annotate this Case
Textbook publishers Pearson Education, Cengage Learning, and The McGraw-Hill Companies (collectively, Publishers) made successful copyright infringement claims against the bankruptcy estate of Joel Almgren. The bankruptcy court struck Publishers' demand for a jury trial and also denied Publishers' motion for attorney's fees. The district court affirmed, finding that Publishers waived any right to a jury trial on copyright liability and damages by filing proofs of claim in the bankruptcy proceeding and that the bankruptcy court relied on appropriate factors in denying an award of attorney's fees. The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed, holding (1) Publishers relinquished their right to have a jury determine the amount of damages when they filed claims against Almgren's bankruptcy estate; and (2) the bankruptcy court did not clearly err in finding that an award of attorney's fees was not appropriate under these circumstances.