Tim Ludbrook

Associate Member (Call Date: 1996)
Tim Ludbrook

Tim is a highly-experienced business lawyer and advocate. As well as his associate membership of East Anglian Chambers, he continues to be a member of leading commercial chancery set Three Stone Chambers in Lincoln’s Inn, London.

In addition to solicitors, Tim is regularly instructed by other professionals including trade mark and patent attorneys, foreign-based lawyers, in-house counsel, accountants, and company secretaries.

Tim is also registered for Direct ‘Public’ Access, and is happy to accept instructions directly from members of the public.

Tim’s core specialisms relate to the creation, exploitation and enforcement of Intellectual Property rights and the protection of reputation, privacy, confidences and secrets. That said, his workload encompasses also very many aspects of business law and practice.

Tim deals with both contentious and non-contentious concerns and provides specialist advice, coupled with drafting (including the creation and review of contracts), and advocacy services – to his professional and lay clients as required – in the UK, the EU, the US, and beyond. He offers representation in negotiation, mediation and arbitration contexts as well as at substantive hearings, trial, and on appeal before a broad range of courts and tribunals, including the UKIPO, County Court, High Court, and Court of Appeal.

Viewed in the round, Tim’s work is grounded in five key (and often overlapping) areas of law and practice:

  • Intellectual Property (principally – copyright; designs; trademarks & passing off; breach of confidence; and branding)
  • Media (particularly – defamation; privacy; freedom of information; news content and reporting; contempt; race hatred; obscenity; blasphemy; broadcasting law and media regulation; and censorship and film/video classification)
  • Entertainment & Sport (for example – performers’ rights; moral rights; rights in performances; music and literary publishing; artist management; recording contracts; advertising law and regulation; film and TV production, finance and content clearance; sponsorship; merchandising; and event staging and venues)
  • Information Technology (including – software creation and exploitation; rights in databases; data protection; social media; internet fora; website content; and peer-to-peer issues)
  • Commercial (especially – all aspects of contract; economic torts g. conspiracy, deceit, intimidation, unlawful interference with trade etc.; many trust scenario; franchising; parallel and grey imports; trading standards; and fraud)

Tim acts for clients whose activities range right across the entire spectrum of creative and commercial fields – from music, broadcasting, publishing, fashion, film, TV, fine art, and sports, through engineering, manufacturing and other forms of industry, to High Street retail businesses and the provision of a myriad of types of goods and services. His practice also encompasses many new fields of endeavour, such as social media and other forms of technological innovation and communication.

As a consequence of his breadth of practice over the past three decades, Tim has acted for and against a highly diverse range of individuals and organisations – from Local Authorities to famous motor manufacturers, multinational telecoms companies to IT retail outlets, pop and rock stars to newly formed bands, world-renowned distillers to local restaurants, broadcasters and music publishers to sole trader photographers, and high net worth and ultra-successful men and women of business to SMEs and start-ups.

Court and Tribunal experience

County Court
Intellectual Property Enterprise Court (including the Patents Court)
High Court – not IP (Chancery Division & QBD)
Court of Appeal
The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU)
UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO), at first instance and on appeal before the Appointed Person

Qualifications & Education

LL.M (Intellectual Property Law) (Lond): 1997
Bar Vocational Course: 1996
LL.B (Hons): 1995

Memberships & Appointments

Inner Temple (1996)
Lincoln’s Inn (ad eundem, 1997)
Intellectual Property Bar Association (IPBA)
Chancery Bar Association (Ch.BA)
Honorary Board of the UK Law Students Association (UKLSA)
International Association of Entertainment Lawyers (IAEL)
International Trademark Association (INTA)

Reported Cases / Cases of Interest
  • Henson (p.k.a. ‘Dot Allison’) v Warner Chappell Music, McGuire & Holmes (p.k.a. ‘Death In Vegas’) & Universal Music (High Court, Chancery Division) Music copyright authorship, ownership and infringement; tortious conspiracy; breach of contract; limitation; acquiescence; laches and delay: Whether joint authorship/co-ownership of rights in the musical work created extemporarily during a recording session; the nature and effect of implied and express terms in a music publishing contract; the legal characterisation of parties acting together for an implied aim in the context of the creation of an extempore musical work and its subsequent exploitation; and whether the claims were statute barred or estopped.
  • Re Simmons Trade Mark (UKIPO, Appeal to the Appointed Person) UK Trade Mark earlier right/bad faith: Whether evidence formally challenged by pleadings; whether goodwill subsisting to support unregistered rights; whether rights abandoned in relation to a music business context; the scope and effect of UK unregistered rights reference a US proprietor; and the degree of enquiry necessary to establish bad faith.
  • Seaton, Grant & others (p.k.a. ‘Musical Youth’) v Seddon, Universal Music, Music Sales & others (High Court, Chancery Division) Music copyright authorship, ownership and infringement; fraud; breach of fiduciary duty/trust; unlawful interference; and mental versus legal capacity: Whether, in relation to the ownership of a derivative work and the representation of the band, the conduct of solicitor advisors was in fraudulent breach of trust; and whether the claims were statute barred or estopped.
  • MediaCAT v Adams & others (Patents County Court) Film copyright ownership, infringement, and licensing; P2P (Peer to Peer) use; the meaning of ‘authorising’; ‘discontinuance’ of an action under the CPR; and Norwich Pharmacal orders: The meaning of ‘making available to the public’; the technical evidence required to ground an infringement claim; the ambit of exclusive and non-exclusive licensee’s right(s) to sue; and the joinder of a rights owner as either claimant or defendant in the context of P2P and Wi-Fi router usage.
  • Entegris Inc v OHIM (European Court of Justice, Appeal to the General Court) Community Trade Mark – registerability: Whether likelihood of confusion (OPTIMIZER / OPTIMIZE TECHNOLOGIES).
  • Re Breadtalk PBE’s Trade Marks (UKIPO, Appeal to the Appointed Person) UK Trade Mark – revocation for non-use: Whether Internet discussion forum focusing on goods in a specification constituted ‘trade mark use’; and the interrelationship between the Community Trade Mark Regulation and the European Convention on Human Rights.
  • British Board of Film Classification (t/a BBFC) v Interactive Software Federation of Europe (t/a ISFE) (High Court, Chancery Division) Artistic work copyright infringement; Community and UK Trade Mark infringement and passing off: Whether proposed use of certain symbols in connection with the classification of computer games would constitute infringement of earlier rights.
  • Danielle Lloyd v Carphone Warehouse & another (High Court, Chancery Division) Photographic copyright infringement; privacy; and vicarious liability: Whether employer vicariously liable for employee in relation to copying digital images per se; and whether primary conduct infringed rights in connection with the non-consensual copying of images taken with a mobile telephone camera.
  • Re Tom Parker’s Trade Mark (UKIPO, Appeal to the Appointed Person) UK Trade Mark registration procedure: The basis and limits of discretion of the Appointed Person to reserve an appeal to herself in the face of both an application to transfer made by the Respondent and a change of position by the Appellant.
  • Euroinvest v BT (High Court, Chancery Division) Norwich Pharmacal Orders: Whether, in an ex-employee/IT context, there was sufficient evidence that email accounts and computer systems were accessed unlawfully.
  • Dearlove (p.k.a. ‘Diddy’) v Combs (p.k.a. ‘Diddy’, ‘P. Diddy’ and ‘Puff Daddy’) (High Court, Chancery Division) Passing off and breach of contract: Whether same trade conduit/deception; whether the defendant enjoyed rights in the UK by or under the mark DIDDY; whether a song lyric can serve to advertise goods and services; and whether an artist controls material placed on websites such as YouTube and MySpace by others to whom he is commercially connected.
  • Buchan (p.k.a. ‘The Exploited’) v Wondena (t/a ‘Dream Catcher Records’) (Chancery Division) Music contract: Whether, in an artist/ recording company context, a complex royalty accounting had been conducted properly.
  • Beckingham (p.k.a. ‘Bobby Valentino’) v Wilson (p.k.a. ‘Bobby Valentino’ and ‘Bobby V’) & Def Jam Records (Chancery Division) Passing off; UK Trade Mark infringement; and breach of contract: Whether the nature and effect of recorded lyrics can ground an infringement of rights in record sales and artist’s live performance contexts.
  • Atari v Opal (High Court, Chancery Division) Norwich Pharmacal Orders: Whether, in a P2P (Peer-to-Peer) context, there was sufficient evidence of illicit downloading of video games.
  • Omega v OHIM ECR (European Court of Justice, Appeal to the Court of First Instance) Community Trade Mark registerability: Whether likelihood of confusion (OMEGA/OMEGA).
  • Ontex NV v OHIM ECR (European Court of Justice, Appeal to the Court of First Instance) Community Trade Mark registerability: Whether likelihood of confusion (CURON/EURON)
  • Experience LLC v Purple Haze Music & another (Court of Appeal) Performers rights: Whether the claimant was able to exploit lawfully certain recordings of the late Jimi Hendrix; and whether fact of a state joining EU has retrospective effect re performers rights.
  • Sales v Stromberg & others (High Court, Chancery Division) Design right infringement: Whether complementary medical devices, designed as jewellery are to be considered ‘commonplace in the design field in question’ given certain ‘ancient’ designs; the meaning of ‘design document’; and whether copying was ‘substantial’.
  • Torry v Pink Floyd Music & others (High Court, Chancery Division) Music copyright authorship, ownership and infringement; limitation; acquiescence; laches, delay and unconscionable conduct: Whether joint authorship / co-ownership of rights in a musical work created extemporarily during a recording session; whether claims statute barred or estopped; and whether conduct of claimant or defendants was unconscionable (‘competing unconscionability’).
  • Swan v Bereta & others (High Court, Chancery Division) Copyright subsistence and design right: Whether 3D greetings cards were ‘works of artistic craftsmanship’ / articles in which design right subsisted.
  • Re Kraft Jacobs Suchard SA’s application (UKIPO, Appeal to the Appointed Person) UK Trade Mark registerability: Whether 3D triangular praline box (Toblerone) registerable; the proper basis for the introduction of new evidence on appeal; and whether earlier ‘shape mark’ registration ‘captured’ the later application.
  • Re Nordic Sauna’s Application (UKIPO, Appeal to the Appointed Person) UK Trade Mark registerability: The nature of an absolute grounds objection and scope of term ‘geographic origin’.
  • Nichol and others (t/a ‘Nichol & Dime’) v Shaun Rider (High Court, Chancery Division) Breach of contract; unreasonable restraint of trade; and undue influence: Whether unlawful conduct in a music business management / artist relationship context.
Personal Interests

Classic cars
Fly fishing
Trying to learn to play the guitar properly

Areas of Specialism
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