Touchstone Television Prods. v. Superior Court, 208 Cal. App. 4th 676 (2012)

Touchstone had an agreement with actress Nicollette Sheridan that gave it the exclusive option to renew Sheridan’s contract on an annual basis for an additional six seasons (after the first season) of the television show “Desperate Housewives.” Sheridan sued Touchstone for wrongful termination in violation of public policy, claiming she had been

Mattel, Inc. v. MGA Entm’t, Inc., 616 F.3d 904 (2010)

In 2000, during his employment with Mattel, Carter Bryant pitched his idea for the Bratz line of dolls to MGA, which was one of Mattel’s competitors. The year before, Bryant had signed an employment agreement with Mattel pursuant to which he agreed to disclose and assign to Mattel all “inventions” conceived or reduced to practice at any time during his employment with Mattel. After it learned of Bryant’s involvement in the Bratz line of dolls, Mattel sued MGA, Bryant and others. Prior to the trial, which resulted in (among other things) a $10 million jury award to Mattel for copyright damages and the imposition of a constructive trust in favor of Mattel over all Bratz trademarks, the judge determined that under the employment agreement, Bryant had assigned his “ideas” (not just his “inventions”) to Mattel.

Day v. American Seafoods Co., 557 F.3d 1056 (9th Cir. 2009)

Jesse Day entered into a contract to work for American Seafoods Co. for one fishing voyage. In this lawsuit, Day sought payment for “unearned wages” for a period of time longer than the single voyage and contended that extrinsic evidence would establish an oral understanding for a longer period. The district court declined

Berg v. Traylor, 148 Cal. App. 4th 809 (2007)

Meshiel Cooper Traylor and her minor son Craig Lamar Traylor appealed the judgment confirming an arbitration award in favor of Craig’s former personal manager, Sharyn Berg, for unpaid commissions under an “Artist’s Manager’s Agreement” among Berg, Meshiel and Craig. Meshiel and Berg signed the agreement; Craig, who was 10 years old at the time, did

Powers v. Rug Barn, 15 Cal. Rptr. 3d 292, 117 Cal. App. 4th 1011 (2004)

Fred Powers and Suzanne DeVall were partners in a company called Earth Tapestries, which was engaged in providing consulting, design and sales related to textiles and home furnishings and products. Another company, Rug Barn, expressed an interest in entering into a business agreement with Earth Tapestries but later indicated