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Photo of Gabriella  Nourafchan Ismaj

Gabriella Nourafchan Ismaj

Partner - los angeles


May 22, 1989, in the Architecture Quadrangle on the UCLA campus, the School of Law held its 37th commencement ceremony. The auspicious occasion featured U.S. Supreme Court Justice Harry A. Blackmun as the principal speaker and Gabriella Nourafchan, who gracefully floated across the dais grasping the prized Juris Doctorate diploma. But it wasn’t hers . . . it belonged to her mother. Gabriella was only along for the ride as a 6-month old in her mother’s arms.

Not surprisingly, Gabriella knew very early in life that law school would be in her future. As an avid sports enthusiast in high school, playing everything from soccer to field hockey, she displayed an intensity and commitment to performance on the field that would pave the way towards life as a litigator. As Gabriella moved from high school to college to law school, she acquired another interesting trait found to be useful in her line of work . . . an addiction to different colored highlighters. Her reputation amongst her circle of friends for her color coding techniques was well established, which continues to this day in her Outlook calendar.

The crowning moment for Gabriella came when, on the same UCLA campus twenty-five years later, she received her own Juris Doctorate diploma in the presence of The Honorable John Paul Stevens, Associate Justice, United States Supreme Court (Ret.), and her mother of course.


Legal Expertise

Gabriella’s practice focuses on Entertainment and Intellectual Property Litigation, representing many leading businesses and individuals in the music, film, fashion, hospitality and television industries, as well as emerging and established technology businesses.  Gabriella has significant experience litigating in both state and federal courts across the country, with a concentration on copyright, trademark, and contract and commercial disputes.

Representative Matters

  • Represents record labels, music publishers, songwriters, producers, managers and artists in a variety of music industry disputes, including copyright and trademark/trade dress infringement, breach of contract and tortious interference claims.
    • Member of trial team representing artists, producers, and various record labels and studios that obtained judgment as a matter of law on behalf of all Defendants at the close of evidence, and dismissed Plaintiff’s copyright infringement claim, which was affirmed by the Ninth Circuit on appeal.
    • Member of defense team representing songwriters, publishers, and record labels in recent copyright infringement trial in the Ninth Circuit.
    • Current representation of music administrator in high-profile copyright infringement case against an online content provider for unauthorized use of lyrics on online platform.
  • Represents individuals and businesses in defamation and right of publicity actions.
  • Represents clients from film, fashion, hospitality, technology, and television industries, as well as online content providers, in disputes involving copyright and trademark/trade dress infringement, breach of contract, tortious interference, and other business disputes.
    • Represented plaintiff fashion brand against competitor in trade dress infringement dispute, resulting in favorable settlement for client.
    • Defended technology company against copyright infringement claims by songwriter.
    • Member of litigation team that negotiated favorable settlement for international company in breach of contract dispute.

Other Career Experience

  • Judicial Extern to the Honorable Margaret M. Morrow, U.S. District Court for the Central District of California
  • Legal Intern, Law Offices of Levy & Nourafchan LLP




  • California, 2014
  • U.S. District Court
  •   Central District of California, 2014
  •   Northern District of California, 2019
  •   Southern District of California, 2021
  • U.S. Court of Appeals
  •   Ninth Circuit, 2014


University of California Los Angeles School of Law, J.D., 2014

University of Pennsylvania, B.A., Communications, 2011; magna cum laude, Dean's List (2008 & 2010)


  • Farsi
  • Spanish
  • Italian
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