Zuffa files Partial Motion for Summary Judgment to dismiss Nate Quarry from antitrust lawsuit
February 2, 2017
Zuffa has filed a motion for partial summary judgment to dismiss the claims of antitrust plaintiff Nate Quarry based on statute of limitations.
The motion was filed yesterday and requests an oral argument although that is not guaranteed.
The motion seeks to dismiss Quarry’s claims based on his promotional, bout and merchandise agreements with the company and deposition testimony. The motion claims that Quarry’s claim is barred by the Four-Year Statute of Limitations. In the alternative, it states that the “continuing violation exception” does not apply to his untimely claim.
“Distilled to its essence, Mr. Quarry’s claim challenges the scope of the UFC Identity Rights he contractually granted to Zuffa, the duration of those grants, and the payments he received in return—all terms in his 2004, 2005, and 2008 Promotional Agreements; his 2008 Merchandise Rights Agreement; and his January 2010 Bout Agreement.”
Zuffa argues that Quarry’s “last relevant agreement with Zuffa was executed in January 2010, but he chose to file suit in December 2014.”
15 U.S.C. section 15b limits antitrust claims to a four-year statute of limitations.
Zuffa also claims that Quarry’s claim should not be allowed through the “continuing violation exception.” This exception would override a statute of limitations defense. However, Zuffa argues that relevant case law precludes such an exception since Quarry signed his Identity Rights outside the limitations period. Even if Quarry argues that he received a benefit after the limitations period (i.e. after January 2010 and within four years from the filing of the lawsuit, thus being within the time to sue), there was not a new “overt act” performed by Zuffa which would restart the statute of limitations.
The motion was filed with Quarry’s promotional, bout and merchandise agreements but they were filed under seal meaning that public does not have access to them.
Quarry was deposed by Zuffa and you can see the strategy was to probe him for information to try to dismiss his claims from the lawsuit. Similarly, we would probably see this happening with other UFC veterans. Plaintiffs will have until mid-February to oppose the motion.