On Monday, a California Federal Judge ruled that Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke will not have to pay Marvin Gaye’s family’s $3.5 million in legal fees. The battle has been ongoing for some time and has finally come to a close.
However, the news comes as a surprise to many, as Williams and Thicke were found guilty of infringing one of Gaye’s songs, and ordered to pay a massive $7.4 million to Marvin Gaye’s children. What’s interesting is that it was actually Williams and Thicke who kick-started the battle by seeking declarative relief from a judge that their song ‘Blurred Lines’ was not infringing of Gaye’s ‘Got To Give It Up’.
Their lawsuit was reportedly filed way before Gaye’s family even took it to court.
There is reasoning behind Williams and Thicke being the first to take action. The preemptive strike is likely due to the fact that the duo wanted to protect themselves from a massive case that would attract global attention, a plan that ultimately backfired. By Williams and Thicke taking the first steps, it sparked the Gaye family to cross-claim and fight back with vengeance.
According to the Daily Mail, the Gaye family’s lawyer, Richard Busch said ”We did not start this fight… Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke started this lawsuit. We fought this fight with one arm tied behind our back.”
The $7.4 million was a massive win for the Gaye family, so the extra $3.5 could be pushing it a little. Well, at least thats how the presiding judge in the ruling saw it. Despite popular belief, it isn’t common in US lawsuits for the winning party to win legal fees from the opposing side.
Luckily for Williams and Thicke, American judges typically rule that each party ponies their own legal fees, regardless of victory or defeat.