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Ouch. Default judgment for $258,484.45

When you are litigating against someone, getting to a verdict is less than half of the race. The other half is enforcing the judgment against the scofflaw.

Photographer Scott Gunnells sued two of the stars of American Chopper, the TV show, Paul Teutul and Michael Teutul, and their business Orange County Choppers, Inc. for unlawfully using ten of his photographs (Gunnells v. Michael Teutul et al., Case 1:19-cv-05331 and 1:10-cv-05312 (SDNY), Dkt 35, First Amended Complaint). The defendants were served with Mr. Gunnells' copyright infringement lawsuit, but for some reason chose not to participate in the lawsuit. The Court awarded Mr. Gunnells a default judgment for $258,484.45 (Dkt 67).

Now that Mr. Gunnells has a judgment, he has to enforce the judgment which means finding assets against which to levy the judgment, such as bank accounts, brokerage accounts, security deposits, placing liens on real property, etc. Moreover, given that Paul Teutul had previously declared bankruptcy in 2018 (see link), the judgment may be worth less than the cost of obtaining it.

Photo by Oleg Magni from Pexels

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