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A song from “Frozen” becomes a subject of litigation

California fans of the movie Frozen may be interested to learn about a legal dispute that has arisen over the hit song “Let It Go.” A Spanish recording artist is suing the company, claiming its melody was taken from his song “Volar.”

“Volar” was a 2008 song recorded in Spanish that sold millions of copies worldwide. However, the artist now claims that there are too many similarities in the songs, including note patterns, structure, melody and lyrics, according to court documents.

He is suing Disney, the owner of the movie, as well as the recording artist for the movie, the artist who released the song as a single and others. If successful, the artist is entitled to monetary damages from the responsible parties. Due to the enormous commercial success of the song, damages could be substantial if the suit is valid and damages are awarded.

A copyright is one of the oldest property rights in American Jurisprudence, and it is designed to offer legal protection for those who have created an original work. A properly created copyright protects the owner from those who seek to copy, reproduce, perform, publish or otherwise use a protected work. Over the years, many successful songs have been the subject of a copyright infringement lawsuit.

In copyright litigation, the plaintiff must first prove that he or she is the owner of a valid copyright. The next step is proving the works were sufficiently similar in style, structure and content that was likely taken from the copyrighted material. If the plaintiff proves these elements, the court may assess damages or provide other forms of relief. In some cases, the court will issue an injunction to prevent further use of the material. If the material has already been published, monetary damages are normally the appropriate relief.