U.S. Supreme Court Finds Broad Covenant Not To Sue Moots Competitor’s Counterclaim

In a January 9, 2013, decision, the U.S. Supreme Court found a broad covenant not to sue filed by trademark owner Nike mooted the defendant’s counterclaim for trademark invalidity. Applying the voluntary cessation doctrine, the Supreme Court held that the defendant’s only legally cognizable injury — Nike’s enforcement of its trademark — was gone in view of Nike’s covenant not to sue. Further, given the breadth of the covenant, that injury could not reasonably be expected to recur. Thus, because there was no other basis on which to find a live controversy, the case was moot.  For a link to our summary of the case, click here.