Quality King v. L'anza

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Quality King Distributors, Inc. v. L'anza Research International, Inc.
Seal of the United States Supreme Court.svg
Argued December 8, 1997
Decided March 9, 1998
Full case name Quality King Distributors, Inc., Petitioner v. L'anza Research International, Inc.
Citations 523 U.S. 135 (more)
118 S. Ct. 1125; 140 L. Ed. 2d 254; 1998 U.S. LEXIS 1606; 66 U.S.L.W. 4188; 45 U.S.P.Q.2D (BNA) 1961; Copy. L. Rep. (CCH) P27,750; 26 Media L. Rep. 1385; 98 Cal. Daily Op. Service 1651; 98 Daily Journal DAR 2291; 1998 Colo. J. C.A.R. 1216; 11 Fla. L. Weekly Fed. S 383
Prior history On writ of certiorari to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
Holding
The copyright holder could not prevent re-importation of materials it had authorized.
Court membership
Case opinions
Majority Stevens, joined by unanimous
Concurrence Ginsburg

Quality King Distributors Inc., v. L'anza Research International Inc., 523 U.S. 135 (1998), was a decision by the United States Supreme Court over whether a copyright holder could restrict redistribution of material containing copyrighted content (authorized by the copyright holder) which is imported into the United States as so-called "grey market" goods.

Opinion of the Court[edit]

The Supreme Court found that the copyright holder could not prevent re-importation of the products it had authorized for export to The United States.

This case did not address the importation of products made outside the United States under authority of the copyright holder. The Court addressed that issue in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 568 U.S. ___ (2013), holding that those sales were also qualifying "first sales", and that copyright holders could not restrict trafficking of those works after those sales.

See also[edit]

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