Sara Slavin is a member of the Intellectual Property group in Mayer Brown’s New York Office. She represents clients in a broad range of intellectual property matters, from copyright and trademark infringement claims to intellectual property protection to digital privacy issues. Sara also has experience litigating business and privacy torts, defamation suits, antitrust claims, and general contractual disputes. Sara’s clients have included media and technology companies; major movie studios; television networks; Broadway, film, and television producers; music publishers and record labels; publishing companies; fashion and apparel companies; high net worth estates and individuals; and a variety of small businesses and individual artists and creators.
Sara is a member of the bar of the State of New York and is also admitted to practice in the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York and the Second and Fifth Circuit Courts of Appeals. Sara has handled all phases of litigation in both federal and state court proceedings, from pre-filing investigations through appeals, including managing fact discovery, expert discovery, summary judgment, and settlement.
Prior to joining Mayer Brown, Sara was an associate at several prominent New York law firms and served as a law clerk to the Honorable Bruce M. Selya of the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit. Throughout her career as an attorney, Sara has maintained an active commitment to pro bono work, including representing a class of plaintiffs in a decades-long civil rights litigation against various governmental entities in Birmingham, Alabama; representing an asylum seeker who had been separated from her child shortly after crossing the border into the United States, securing the client’s release from a detention facility and successfully reuniting mother and child; and representing an individual with a physical disability in a litigation against various New York City governmental entities, to recoup wrongfully withheld pension benefits.
Sara received her JD from Harvard Law School. During law school, she completed a clinical internship at the U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of Massachusetts; served as the Managing Editor of the Journal of Law and Public Policy; and served as a research assistant to Professor Vicki Jackson.
Prior to law school, Sara was an analyst in the Legal Department at Goldman, Sachs & Co. At Goldman, she worked in the Finance & Corporate Legal group, where she focused on securities issuances, and in the Litigation and Regulatory Proceedings group, where she focused on securities litigation and regulatory inquiries. Sara also serves as a Trustee of The Harvard Lampoon, a 501(c)(3) organization that publishes a humor magazine.
- Defended major technology company in series of copyright litigations in California federal court relating to claims that company allegedly reproduced and distributed musical compositions without proper authorization.
- Represented production company in dispute over use of production company’s core intellectual property on popular television show.
- Defended major technology company in copyright infringement action in California federal court implicating the company’s notice and takedown procedures under the DMCA.
- Defended major media company against mass arbitrations brought under the federal Video Privacy Protection Act, by obtaining injunction in California state court barring the arbitration filings.
- Successfully defended popular hip-hop duo against copyright infringement claims relating to sampling, by obtaining dismissal of all claims at summary judgment, obtaining a grant of attorneys’ fees under the Copyright Act, and prevailing on Fifth Circuit appeal.
- Successfully defended major media conglomerate and book publisher against copyright and Lanham Act claims over a Nickelodeon film and a children’s book, by obtaining dismissal of all claims and prevailing on Third Circuit appeal.
- Achieved favorable settlement for producer of Broadway adaptation of Harper Lee’s classic novel “To Kill a Mockingbird,” in contractual dispute litigated across federal courts in Alabama and New York, resulting from claim by Ms. Lee’s estate that the play “derogated or departed” from the “spirit” of the novel and altered certain characters allegedly in violation of an agreement signed prior to Ms. Lee’s death in 2016. (The play, a critical and commercial success, opened on Broadway as scheduled in December 2018.)
- Counseled prominent entertainer on viability of defamation claim against public official.
- Represented major mobile telecommunications company in arbitration over data breach related to third-party vendor.
- Successfully defended major media company in antitrust litigation in New York federal court, by obtaining grant of summary judgment and prevailing on Second Circuit appeal.
Harvard Law School, JD, cum laude
Harvard University, AB, cum laude
- New York
- US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
- US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
- US District Court for the Southern District of New York
- US District Court for the Eastern District of New York