Jury awards $3.2 million to Texas firm in Architectural Copyright case

AUSTIN, Texas, Sept. 25, 2012 – Kipp Flores Architects prevailed in a copyright infringement suit filed against Hallmark Design Homes as a federal jury returned a $3.2 million verdict for the Austin, Texas-based firm.

The jury in the U.S. District Court in Houston found that Hallmark infringed Kipp Flores Architects’ copyrights by constructing hundreds of houses from copyrighted architectural designs in violation of federal law.

The verdict is based on the amount of profits Hallmark earned from the sales of the houses at issue, according to the jury.

Kipp Flores Architects principal Sabas Flores said, “We are gratified that the jury vindicated our position and acted to protect our intellectual property. Architectural copyright infringement is a significant problem nationally, and we hope this verdict will send a message to those in the industry who do not take this issue seriously.”

This is the second major federal jury verdict in favor of Kipp Flores Architects. In 2001, a federal jury in Norfolk, Va. returned a multi-million-dollar verdict in the firm’s favor against two Virginia home building companies. The verdict led to one of the largest architectural copyright infringement judgments in history.

Kipp Flores Architects is represented by attorneys Patrick Zummo, of the Law Offices of Patrick Zummo, in Houston, and Louis Bonham of the Austin office of Osha Liang LLP.

The case is “Kipp Flores Architects, LLC v. Hallmark Design Homes, L.P., et al.,” Case 4:09-cv-00850 in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division.

Contacts: Louis Bonham, Osha Liang LLP, (512) 480-0667; Patrick Zummo, the Law Offices of Patrick Zummo, (713) 651-0590.