Author Archives: Joseph M. Hanna

Out of Bounds: Court Rules Against Golf Tailor’s Counterclaims in IP Dispute

In February, GolfBestBuy filed suit in California’s Federal Courts against Golf Tailor, accusing Golf Tailor of purchasing their clubs through authorized reseller Golf Gifts and Gallery Inc., and then, after gauging customer interest, going to a Chinese manufacturer to produce counterfeits. Counterfeit goods from China continue to hinder U.S. markets, and cost U.S. businesses billions a year in lost profits. According to the suit, Golf Tailor bought more than 100,000 clubs from GGG at a unit price of $17 apiece and then sold the clubs…

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Fox Sports Top Executive Fired

On Monday, July 3, 2017, Fox Sports, which is owned by 21st Century Fox, fired top executive Jamie Horowitz after a week-long investigation into alleged sexual harassment. Horowitz has been credited with introducing an influx of hotly-contested sports debate television shows to Fox Sports One following his departure from ESPN. His firing comes after other high profile Fox executives Roger Ailes and Bill O’Reilly were recently forced out or fired due to similar allegations, resulting in Fox paying approximately $45 million in settlements over the…

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MLB Tagged with Racial Discrimination Lawsuit

Angel Hernandez, an umpire for Major League Baseball, has sued the league along with the commissioner’s office. Hernandez alleges that racial discrimination — along with a long term personal vendetta between Joe Torre and himself — has been hindering his career advancement as a professional baseball umpire. Hernandez filed his complaint in the U.S. District Court in Cincinnati, which claimed the Office of the Commissioner of Baseball and Major League Baseball Blue Inc. violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Ohio…

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Seventh Circuit: Season Tickets are a Privilege, Not a Right

On June 22, 2017, a three-judge Seventh Circuit panel ruled Indianapolis Colts’ season ticket holders do not have a right to roll their seats over from one year to the next. This upholds a U.S. District Court ruling from November 2016. This suit was brought by Yehuda Frager, a Pennsylvania-based ticket broker, last March. Frager alleged the Colts refused to renew his 94 sets of season’s tickets, which he paid over $75,000 for. It is alleged the Colts redistributed the tickets to a local…

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Fourth Circuit Says NFL Retirement Plan Wrongfully Denied Request for Higher Benefits

On Friday, June 23, 2017, the Fourth Circuit affirmed a Maryland District Court’s 2016 ruling that the National Football League’s Retirement Plan wrongfully denied a request by former NFL linebacker Jesse Solomon for a higher level of benefits. Solomon sought a higher level of benefits as a result of cognitive impairments he has suffered due to head injuries sustained while playing nine years in the NFL. As a result of the affirmation that the Retirement Plan “abused its discretion” in Solomon’s case, the NFL will…

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Helmet to Helmet: The latest in Schutt and Riddell’s IP Row

Football helmet maker Schutt Sports responded strongly to a bid by rival Riddell Inc. to throw away the IP suit—or to at least give Riddell home field advantage and move the claims to Illinois, where Riddell is headquartered. The suit revolves around Riddell’s alleged infringement on three of Schutt’s helmet design patents, U.S. Patent Nos. 8,938,818, 8,528,118 and 8,813,269. Schutt believes there is no reason to dismiss or move the case from Texas. Schutt contends that Riddell has positioned itself to have a…

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No Pack No! Bears Sued by Packers Fan over Fan Gear

Longtime Green Bay Packers fan Russell Beckman filed a putative class action against the Chicago Bears in Illinois federal court on Friday, June 16, 2017. Beckman is accusing the team of violating fans’ right to free speech by not allowing fans to wear clothing or gear that supports opposing teams when the fan attends any on-field event. Beckman has owned a personal seat license at Soldier Field since 2003 but more often than not, only attends Bears games at Soldier Field when they play the…

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Backcheck, Forecheck … Paycheck? WHL Players Minimum Wage Class-Action Certified

An Alberta, Canada judge has allowed for the certification of a class-action against the Western Hockey League (WHL). The five U.S.-based teams are exempt from the class action since they are outside the court’s purview. Players are suing the league for back wages, overtime, and vacation pay. This suit mirrors two others that are proceeding against the Ontario Hockey League and the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. The players claim they are employees and should be paid at least minimum wage. Currently, the players receive…

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