Partner Paul Llewellyn Discusses Nike Supreme Court Decision in World Intellectual Property Review

January 10, 2013

World Intellectual Property Review reports on a recent Supreme Court decision to dismiss the case of shoe company Already, LLC against Nike. Already had filed a counterclaim to void Nike trademarks that the company had been sued for infringing. However, the court unanimously voted to dismiss the counterclaim, due to the fact that Nike had already dropped the suit and signed an agreement not to sue Already over similar trademarks in the future.

Kaye Scholer Partner Paul Llewellyn, co-chair of the firm’s Trademark, Copyright and False Advertising practice, acknowledges that the decision is intriguing but believes that it is “unlikely to influence an increase in trademark cancellation actions by large companies.” However, he says that “it might encourage some smaller companies to file cancellation actions against larger companies in the hope of obtaining a covenant not to sue from the trademark owner. Whether companies take advantage of this ruling to any meaningful extent to avoid cancellation proceedings remains to be seen.”

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