James R. “Sonny” Chastain, Jr.Partner
Sonny Chastain is a partner in the Baton Rouge office of Kean Miller. He joined the firm in 2000 and practices in the areas of business litigation and intellectual property. Sonny represents clients in various commercial matters regarding contract negotiation and litigation, banking, breach of fiduciary duty, unfair trade practices, and consumer finance. He has experience in truth in lending, fair debt collection practices, antitrust, RICO, employment/non-compete agreements, software licenses, arbitration agreements, investment suitability and broker relations. He also routinely advises clients in matters regarding copyright and trademark registration prosecution, brand management, and IP infringement litigation.
Sonny is listed in Louisiana Super Lawyers, 2016 and in The Best Lawyers in America, 2021. He was listed by Best Lawyers as the Baton Rouge Lawyer of the Year in Trademark Law for 2018 and 2021. Sonny is AV-rated by Martindale-Hubbell. He is a mediator with Perry Dampf Dispute Solutions.
- Representation of employees defending former employer claims of unfair trade practices, tortious interference, breach of confidentiality agreement and breach of fiduciary duty
- Representation of major financial institution before United States Fifth Circuit in a case affirming a district court ruling by enforcing an arbitration agreement signed by a borrower as part of a loan transaction and sale of credit insurance. Moreover, the court concluded that the McCarran-Ferguson Act did not reverse preempt the FAA. The borrowers were not entitles to a trial by jury, and the agreement was not unenforceable due to the alleged high costs of arbitration
- Representation of designer/manufacturer of works of art in copyright infringement and unfair competition action in United States District Court
- Representation of automobile dealership before United States Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in defending class action suit alleging truth in lending violations and consumer fraud
- Representation of manufacturer defending allegations of vertical price restraint and price fixing
- Representation of financial advisor in FINRA arbitration proceeding regarding breach of fiduciary duty
- Representation of manager of limited liability company in defending claims of securities fraud and breach of fiduciary duty
- Representation of software licensor in contract dispute
- Representation of shoe manufacture/distributor in defending trademark and unfair competition claims based on sales utilizing the Internet
- Representation of a large industrial company in defending claims of conversion, misappropriation of trade secrets involving project control system software
- Representation of numerous clients including restaurants, manufacturers/distributors, retailers, etc. in prosecuting trademark applications before the United States Patent and Trademark Office and instituted opposition proceeding before the United States Trademark Trial and Appeal Board
Sonny earned his B.S. in Finance from Louisiana State University in 1986. He earned his J.D. from the LSU Law Center in 1989. Sonny then served as a Law Clerk to the Hon. Frank J. Polozola, United States District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana.
- Admitted, Louisiana, 1989; United States District Courts for the Eastern, Middle and Western Districts of Louisiana; United States Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit, 1992; United States Supreme Court, 2003
- Baton Rouge, Louisiana State (Intellectual Property Section) and American (Intellectual Property and Practice Management Sections) Bar Associations; Wex S. Malone American Inn of Court
- Fifth Circuit Rules Use of Vizzy and Brizzy For Seltzer Not Confusing, Intellectual Property Law Blog, March 5, 2021
- Jazz Musician Fails to Produce Evidence of Copying, Intellectual Property Blog, February 25, 2021
- Don't Forget the Registration Symbol, Intellectual Property Blog, February 8, 2021
- Supreme Court Rules Copyright Claim Requires Registration, Intellectual Property Blog, April 12, 2019
- Trademark Ownership Based on Actual Use, Intellectual Property Blog, October 9, 2018
- Cell Phone Reward and Risk, Louisiana Law Blog, September 28, 2018
- Louisiana First Circuit Declines to Supply Right of Publicity to Barry Seal Succession, Louisiana Law Blog, June 25, 2018
- Court Rules Restrictive Covenants Out of Bounds, Louisiana Law Blog, June 4, 2018
- General Mills Not Cheery about TTAB Ruling, Louisiana Law Blog, January 12, 2018
- Dilly Dilly on Infringement Demand, Louisiana Law Blog, January 12, 2018
- Is it Time for Your Business to Have a Check-Up?, Louisiana Law Blog, July 28, 2014.
- Legal Issues Involving the Internet, presentation to the Baton Rouge Bar Association, Continuing Education.
- Intellectual Property Overview, Southern University Recent Developments Seminar.
- Fear Factor: How to Deal with Intellectual Property Issues, Baton Rouge Bench Bar Conference.
- Board of Directors, St. Vincent de Paul
- Board of Directors, Baton Rouge Community College Foundation
- Board of Directors, Brothers of the Sacred Heart Foundation
- Board of Directors, Volunteer Baton Rouge
- Member, Catholic High School Alumni Advisory Board
- Member, Sigma Chi Fraternity Alumni Association
- St. Aloysius Church Chorale and Finance Committee
- Baton Rouge Business Report's "40 Under 40" (1999)
- Catholic High School, Law Studies Instructor