4 May 2017Trademarks

Amateur American football governing body sues rival in trademark suit

The national governing body of US amateur American football has sued the US Federation of American Football (USFAF) for unauthorised use of its trademark.

USA Football filed the claim on Tuesday, May 2, at the US District Court for the Southern District of Indianapolis.

USA Football, a non-profit organisation, was founded in 2002 to boost participation rates for the sport. It is the official US National Team (which is referred to as “the mark” in this case).

The USFAF was founded in 2009 “to provide the foundational support for the sport of football in America”.

The USFAF says on its website that its “primary emphasis is on the support and development of amateur athletic-football and will soon launch programmes in men’s and women’s international competition”.

USA Football hosts several high school events, training sessions and nationwide competitions after beings officially endowed by the National Football League.

The USFAF allegedly said on its Facebook page that it has “been named the United States representative to The World Games 2017”.

It has also “solicited coaches and players from across the country to participate in what it refers to as the U.S. National Team, though such team is not sanctioned by, sponsored by, or affiliated with USA Football”.

The suit added: “USA Football recently learned of (USFAF’s) unauthorised use of the mark when it received communication from an independent football coach confused about whether activities with respect to its U.S. National Team were affiliated with USA Football.”

USA Football is seeking a jury trial, a ban on future use of the mark, an account of all profits gained from the use, and for the USFAF to surrender all merchandise.

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More on this story

1 November 2017   The US governing body for amateur American football has settled a trademark infringement dispute with the US Federation of American Football.