Simmons v. Stanberry, No. 14-3106-cv (2nd Cir. Jan. 15, 2016).
Plaintiff, who alleged he was the exclusive licensee of a hip-hop beat later sold to rapper 50 Cent and successfully exploited by him, was too late in filing a lawsuit against the licensor and 50 Cent, says the Second Circuit in affirming dismissal of Plaintiff's copyright claims. Plaintiff was aware of the dispute of defendants' right to exploit and use the beat, and of the alleged infringement, but waited more than three years to file suit. Relying upon Kwan v. Schlein, 634 F.3d 224 (2d Cir. 2011), the Court held that notwithstanding the occurrence of allegedly infringing acts within three years of filing the action, the suit was nonetheless barred by the Copyright Act’s three-year statute of limitations, 17 U.S.C. § 507(b). Because Plaintiff's ownership claim was time barred, he could not revive the time-barred claim of ownership of a copyright interest by relying on the defendants’continued exploitation of the copyright within three years of his filing suit.