Budd Larner has significant expertise in handling all aspects of technology law. Our areas of expertise include, but are not limited to, drafting and negotiating computer related contracts, as well as representing clients in matters involving cutting-edge legal issues in software litigation. The firm was a leader in assisting companies in connection with the legal business issues that arose out of Year 2000 (Y2K) computer conversion projects.
The firm has represented numerous companies in connection with the drafting and negotiating of computer hardware, software, maintenance and consulting agreements with major vendors such as IBM, Hewlett-Packard, Oracle, Microsoft, SAP, SAS, Siemens, McKesson, and Computer Associates. We also have represented companies in their dealings with hundreds of small and mid-sized software vendors. Our drafting and negotiating of these agreements has been aided by our representation of companies in complex, cutting-edge software litigation matters, in which we have analyzed in detail the intent and meaning of every aspect of computer-related contracts.
We have been involved in software litigation matters since the 1980's, and this makes us one of the most experienced law firms in the country in handling these types of lawsuits. In one of the early, cutting-edge software lawsuits in which the firm was involved, the court addressed whether the contract claims of a software provider were preempted by the Copyright Act. National Car Rental Systems v. Computer Associates International. Inc.. 22 U.S.P.Q. 2d 1375 (D. Minn. 1992). In another early, cutting-edge software lawsuit, Computer Associates International, Inc. v. First Fidelity Bancorporation, et al., Civil Action No. 92-1822(NHP) (D.N.J. 1992), we successfully assisted the defendants in procuring a mandatory preliminary injunction to compel the retention of maintenance and support services under complex software license agreements. We have represented numerous other licensees in similar types of circumstances since the early 1990's.
Our reputation and experience in handling all types of cutting-edge legal issues in software litigation has resulted in our current retention by licensees all over the country to represent their interests in lawsuits (or potential lawsuits) filed by licensors.
Over the past few years, the firm has also counseled "licensee clients" by conducting training sessions at their offices. These training sessions are designed to assist and instruct our clients in how to best negotiate software license transactions. The training sessions also assist clients in creating their own form software license agreements, maintenance agreements, RFP's, RFI's, service agreements and statements of work.
The firm has also developed an expertise in representing licensees in connection with software audit requests from software vendors and Business Software Alliance ("BSA"). In particular, the firm has handled many matters for licensees who have received letters from BSA threatening to file a lawsuit against the licensee as a result of alleged copyright infringement violations. BSA's claim of copyright infringement violations is usually accompanied by a computation of the significant penalties a licensee could be exposed to if, in fact, there had been any copyright infringement violations. The firm's extensive experience in all aspects of software licensing and software audits allows it to effectively counsel licensees on all aspects of BSA's inquiries, including requests for software audits.