(202) 408-7600 ext. 2
Georgetown University Law Center, J.D. (1974)
Radcliffe College, Harvard University, A.B. (1970 cum laude)
District of Columbia
U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland
Combining an academic and personal background in arts and culture and a strong foundation in the nuts and bolts of complex legal transactions developed in private practice and on the legal staff of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Susan Lutzker specializes in copyright and other issues related to the use of the Internet and new media in both litigation and transactional matters. She uses her understanding of the nonprofit environment from her years at the National Trust to provide a full range of legal services to nonprofit clients.
Prior to establishing Lutzker & Lutzker with her husband Arnold Lutzker, Ms. Lutzker spent twenty years as in-house attorney at the headquarters of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, a federally-chartered nonprofit organization charged with mobilizing and leading the private preservation movement in the United States. She represented the National Trust in helping to finance complex projects designed to rehabilitate historic communities and landmark properties and build cultural pride, often in blighted inner-city neighborhoods. She developed a special interest in the operation of entrepreneurial activities by nonprofit organizations.
Her early legal practice was with Lane and Edson, P.C., where she worked on novel tax issues involving the syndication of low-income housing, a skill later used at the National Trust to support the Trust’s participation in rehabilitation projects utilizing the historic preservation and low-income tax credits. While at Lane & Edson, she authored articles on real estate financing techniques.
- Representing 88 LLC, a D.C. area multi-media production company, in a copyright and breach of contract suit against the Army contractor which had engaged it to create video modules to educate soldiers, their families and medics about traumatic brain injuries.
- Defending Kardwell International, a family-owned entertainment company, against allegations that Kardwell sold casino gaming layouts which infringed the copyright and trademark rights of mega-corporation Shuffle Master International.
- Representing Ambrose Publishing Company and the Association for Informational Media and Equipment in a lawsuit in California against UCLA, alleging that the university’s streaming of Ambrose’s educational videos infringed its copyrights and was not fair use as the University claimed.
- Analyzing intellectual property coverage under client insurance policies in the context of litigation and acting as the client’s advocate with the insurer.
- Advising clients on risk reduction through special errors and omissions insurance policies designed to protect the intellectual property of web-based businesses and media professionals and new cyber-security insurance products to protect against data privacy and security breaches.
- Advising a nonprofit publisher on contractual, intellectual property and tax exemption matters.
- Providing intellectual property support for the launch and operation of an interactive video mapping website, myblocknyc.com, which includes an educational component through which public school students can learn filmmaking.
- Defending a “John Doe” in a suit by a movie company alleging illegal downloading of a copyrighted movie using the popular file-sharing software Bit Torrent.
- Advising nonprofit clients on issues relating to corporate governance, complex tax exemption issues involving insider transactions and entrepreneurial activities, conflict of interest matters, affiliated nonprofit and for profit entities, intellectual property issues, fiscal sponsorship arrangements and risk management.
- Representing a toy company in trademark disputes with competitors, including advising the company on the strength of its claims against competitors using its marks in connection with Internet advertising.
- Advising clients starting new ventures on choice of entity issues.
- Serving as general counsel for a foundation and its affiliated media organization, formed to provide hope, answers and help to special needs children and their families.
- Dealing with DMCA notice and takedown procedures where copyright infringement is alleged.
- Negotiating agreements on behalf of the sponsoring Palace Arts Foundation with museums, consultants, vendors and licensees.
- Advising on the governing protocol with the Government of Turkey.
- Providing legal and tax counsel to the Foundation in connection with the exhibition and related fund-raising, merchandising and publishing activities.
- Assisting clients with commercial lease negotiations and modifications.
- Pro bono legal advisor to Cultural Alliance of Greater Washington
- Pro bono legal advisor to Washington Art on Call Committee
- Lecturer, Washington Area Lawyers for the Arts workshop on starting a nonprofit business
- “7 Hidden Hazards of Your Website.” June 2009 edition of the online newsletter of the American Society of Association Executives, Author
- “Altering the Contours of Copyright: The DMCA and the Unanswered Questions of Paramount v. 321 Studios,” 21 Santa Clara Computer & High Technology Law Journal 561 (2005), Co-Author with Arnold Lutzker