MLG Business Litigation Group Attorney Negotiates Final Settlement in Nike v. John Geiger Trademark Infringement Lawsuit

By mlgbusinesslit, In Trademark Infringement, 0 Comments

Our MLG Business Litigation Group intellectual property attorney in California, Darren Schwartz, serves as in-house counsel for John Geiger, an influential, independent sneaker designer.

Mr. Schwartz has spent the past year engaged in a legal battle with the brand powerhouse Nike, that filed a lawsuit against Geiger for trademark infringement.

With a final settlement issued at the end of August 2022, the details of the case deserve a second look.

Why Was Nike Suing John Geiger?

Nike originally filed a lawsuit against La La Land Production & Design, Inc., and amended the complaint to include notable designer John Geiger, accusing him of trademark infringement and brand confusion with the rising popularity of his signature model, the GF-01.

Geiger has released several original models of sneakers, leading up to the GF-01. In Geiger’s own words, the GF-01 was “inspired by” the Nike Air Force 1 and Geiger has never shied away from owning the fact that the shoe carried a resemblance to the 1982 classic that has remained one of Nike’s top sellers each year since.

Since August 2021, Nike, Inc., and Geiger have been engaged in a legal battle to determine if the GF-01 did, indeed, infringe on Nike’s trade dress for the Air Force 1 and cause “confusion” in the market.

How Did John Geiger Respond to Nike’s Allegations?

Led by our MLG Business Litigation Group attorney, and Geiger’s in-house counsel, Mr. Schwartz, who partnered with an experienced legal team, including Yeezy Brand General Counsel and co-author of “Sneaker Law,” Kenneth Anand, the suit took several twists and turns, including Geiger’s team moving for a dismissal of Nike’s claims by attempting to prove Nike had failed to show proper evidence backing its claims.

Geiger remained vocal about the legal dealings, stating on his personal social media that he was “preparing to fight this battle for all creators and underdogs fighting the same uphill battle as me.”

The Settlement

After more than a year, on August 30, 2022, Nike announced the parties had officially reached a final settlement and the case was closed.

According to court documents, Nike was slated to begin their depositions on September 1, 2022, however, just days before questioning began, Nike settled the case with Geiger and issued a formal statement, stating that Nike “respects” John Geiger and “both parties are pleased to resolve this dispute in a way that allows John Geiger to continue building his brand.”

Though specific details remain confidential, the settlement will involve a modification of certain elements of the GF-01 that Geiger has already been in the process of reproducing while keeping the overall signature silhouette intact.

Call MLG Business Litigation Attorneys in Florida & California Today  

If your company — no matter its size — has been accused of trademark infringement, or if you would like to pursue another company for an intellectual property dispute, including trademark, copyright, patent litigation, or trade secrets, we can help.

Contact our MLG Business Litigation Group in California or Florida today at (786) 706-9228 to schedule a free initial consultation to learn more about our law firm, while we learn more about your unique business and legal needs.

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