Lex Machina’s Second Annual Trademark Litigation Year in Review Report Shows Overall Trademark Litigation Filings In Decline

Chanel No.1 in damages awarded for trademark litigation followed by Burberry Ltd. and Gucci.
Coach the leading plaintiff in trademark cases, followed by Chanel and Microsoft.

Menlo Park, CA, May 23, 2016 – Lex Machina, a LexisNexis company and creator of Legal Analytics®, today announced the release of its second annual Trademark Litigation Year in Review report, highlighting key filings, findings, remedies, and damages in trademark cases pending in U.S. District Court from 2009 through the first quarter of 2016.

The 2016 report examines sub-categories of Lanham Act violations including Cybersquatting and False Advertising. As instances of Cybersquatting and False Advertising increase, separating them from the more traditional trademark violations will ensure more accurate data analysis of criteria such as time to preliminary and permanent injunctions. Similarly, Lex Machina has introduced a new category of damages, Mass Counterfeiter Default Damages. This category separates out cases where courts award an (often high) amount per defendant, but where the actual number or identity of the defendants is unknown. Because the total amount of damages awarded in the case cannot be reliably calculated, Lex Machina has separated these cases to prevent other trademark damages totals from becoming artificially inflated.

“Information on who is filing trademark cases, how long those cases take, and how they turn out is key to evaluating how your trademark litigation strategy compares with that of other companies,” said Brian Howard, Lex Machina’s data scientist and co-author of the report.  “It’s important to defend your marks, but data can make sure it’s being done effectively and on budget.”

Among the report’s key findings are:

  • The Central District of California was the most popular district for trademark filings (4,164 cases filed from 2009 through Q1 of 2016), although it has seen a decline since 2015 corresponding to an overall decline in all trademark cases filings.
  • Among the other top districts, the Northern District of Illinois is notable for seeing some growth during the same period.
  • Chanel was awarded the most damages from 2009 through Q1 2016 (nearly $1 billion) followed by Burberry Ltd. ($523 million), and Gucci ($208 million).
  • Coach was the leading plaintiff in trademark cases filed in this period with 730 cases, followed by Chanel (330 cases) and Microsoft (203 cases).
  • Top defendants include Syngenta Seeds (184 cases), Big Bad Limo Service (109 cases), Amazon.com (66 cases), and Walmart (59 cases). Although the National Football League technically tops the list of defendants (548 cases), these cases related to a single dispute over use of former players’ likenesses in the District of Minnesota filed in Q3 of 2014
  • In cybersquatting cases, Chanel, Deckers, Tiffany, Louis Vuitton, Gucci, and Coach were the most common parties to win relinquishment of a domain name.

The report data was compiled using Lex Machina’s award-winning Legal Analytics® platform, which is used by half of the AmLaw 100 law firms, as well as major corporations such as Microsoft, IBM, Nike and eBay. Armed with the report, trademark attorneys can make better strategic decisions related to forum planning, based on detailed analyses of districts and judges. They can also make sound budgeting decisions using historical data about the timing of trials and injunctions, and identify top parties and firms to inform marketing strategies and outside counsel selection.

To register for a complimentary copy of Lex Machina’s Trademark Litigation Year in Review report, please visit:  http://pages.lexmachina.com/Trademark-Report_2015.html

About Lex Machina
Lex Machina’s award-winning Legal Analytics® platform is a new category of legal technology that fundamentally changes how companies and law firms compete in the business and practice of law. Delivered as Software-as a-Service, Lex Machina provides strategic insights on judges, lawyers, parties, and IP, mined from millions of pages of legal information. This allows law firms and companies to predict the behaviors and outcomes that different legal strategies will produce, enabling them to win cases and close business.

Lex Machina is used by established companies such as Microsoft, Google, Nike, and eBay, and prominent law firms like Wilson Sonsini, Fish & Richardson and Fenwick & West. Lex Machina was named one of the “Best New Legal Services” by readers of The Recorder in 2014 and 2015, and received the “Best New Product of the Year” award in 2015 from the American Association of Law Libraries.

Based in Silicon Valley, Lex Machina is part of LexisNexis, a leading information provider and a pioneer in delivering trusted legal content and insights through innovative research and productivity solutions, supporting the needs of legal professionals at every step of their workflow. By harnessing the power of Big Data, LexisNexis provides legal professionals with essential information and insights derived from an unmatched collection of legal and news content—fueling productivity, confidence and better outcomes.