Try Again! Professional Photographer Must Attempt to Serve Defendant Before Resorting to the Secretary of State for Service of Process

Chevrestt v. Diamond Diaspora Media, LLC, Civil Action No. 1:21-cv-04847-SCJ (N.D. Ga. June 7, 2022)

Plaintiff Angel Chevrestt filed suit against Defendant Diamond Diaspora Media, LLC on November 24, 2021 in the Northern District of Georgia (Atlanta Division). The Complaint alleges that Defendant infringed Plaintiff’s copyright under 17 U.S.C. §§ 106, 501.

According to the Complaint, Plaintiff is a professional photographer who created the photograph of business owner Celeste Beatty which Defendant published in its October 25, 2016 article titled “5 Black-Owned Breweries You Should Know About” without Plaintiff’s license, permission, or attribution. Plaintiff bases her claim of copyright infringement on this publication.

Exhibit C to the Complaint

On June 7, 2022, the court ordered Plaintiff to show cause that she has exercised reasonable diligence in attempting to serve Defendant/its registered agent directly in this case before resorting to service via the Georgia Secretary of State under O.C.G.A. § 14-11- 209(f). Under O.C.G.A. § 14-11- 209(f), “whenever [an LLC’s] registered agent cannot with reasonable diligence be found at the registered office, then the Secretary of State shall be an agent of such limited liability company upon whom any process, notice, or demand may be served.” The court explained that Plaintiff provided no evidence regarding her attempts to serve Defendant directly in this action and instead detailed another plaintiff’s attempts to serve Defendant directly in a related, yet separate, lawsuit.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s