FacultyFaculty/Author Profile
Kelly M. Klaus

Kelly M. Klaus

Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP

San Francisco, CA, USA

Kelly Klaus is a litigation partner in the Los Angeles and San Francisco offices of Munger, Tolles & Olson. Mr. Klaus’s practice is focused on copyright and complex commercial litigation. He has represented all of the major motion picture studios and all of the major recorded music companies in some of their highest-profile copyright litigation matters in recent years. The Daily Journal has named him among the 75 leading intellectual property lawyers in California in each of the last five years, and he has been selected for inclusion in Chambers USA.

Most recently, Mr. Klaus represented the four major recorded music companies in their trial against LimeWire and its founder (resulting in a $105 million settlement); the six major motion picture studios in their successful infringement action against the Zediva DVD-streaming service; and the studios in their successful action against RealNetworks for violating the DMCA’s anti-circumvention provisions with its “RealDVD” DVD-copying device.

Mr. Klaus is a member of the Los Angeles Copyright Society and the board of Legal Advisers of the Copyright Alliance. He has taught appellate advocacy at Stanford Law School and has been a member of Stanford Law School’s Board of Visitors. He has also served as a member of the board of governors of the Association of Business Trial Lawyers in Los Angeles and the board of trustees of the Shelburne Museum in Vermont.

Mr. Klaus received his B.A. from UCLA and his J.D. from Stanford Law School. Following law school, and prior to joining Munger Tolles, he was a law clerk to Judge William H. Orrick, Jr., U.S. District Court, Northern District of California; to Judge Pamela Ann Rymer, U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit; and to Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, Supreme Court of the United States.

Key Representations

  • Sony Music Entertainment, EMI Group, Warner Music Group and Universal Music Group, in their action against LimeWire and its founder. After obtaining  a permanent injunction against LimeWire, Munger Tolles proceeded to a damages trial in U.S. District Court. Two weeks into trial, the defendants agreed to pay the record companies $105 million.
  • The six motion picture studio members of the Motion Picture Association of America,
    •  in securing an injunction against the operators of Zediva, an unlicensed video-on-demand service that transmits performances of copyrighted motion pictures to Zediva customers through the Internet.
    • in obtaining permanent injunctions against RealNetworks "RealDVD" device for  copying DVDs.
  • Universal Music Group, in claims for secondary copyright liability against Bertelsmann AG and Hummer Winblad Venture Partners arising out of the infringing Napster service.
  • Warner Music Group, in copyright infringement actions against iMeem and SeeqPod.
  • Aftermath Records, in litigation claiming copyright infringement based on the distribution of Eminem downloads through iTunes.
  • Universal Music Corp., in action alleging a knowing material misrepresentation under DMCA Section 512(f).
  • The six motion picture studio members of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), as amicus curiae in cases in the Supreme Court, the 2nd and 9th Circuits, and District Courts, including as amicus in the Viacom v. YouTube case in the 2nd Circuit.
  • Electronic Arts, in ongoing copyright litigation against Zynga in which EA alleges that Zynga's online social game "The Ville" infringes EA's copyrighted game "Sims Social."
  • Playdom (part of the Disney Interactive Media Group) and Vostu (world’s largest maker of online social games in Portuguese) in copyright litigation against Zynga.
  • Green Hills Software, in successfully defending a five-month arbitration that questioned whether application program interfaces for computer programs are copyrightable subject matter.

Practice Areas

  • Litigation
  • Copyright


Media and Entertainment


  • UCLA  (B.A., 1989)
  • Stanford University (J.D., 1992) Order of the Coif, Stanford Law Review 1990-1992


  • Judge William H. Orrick, Jr., U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, 1992-1993
  • Judge Pamela Ann Rymer, U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, 1993-1994
  • Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, U.S. Supreme Court

Bar Admissions



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