The Fashion Law Exclusive – There has been a major update in the AbbVie v. Brian Lichtenberg & Kitson case. You may recall that AbbVie, the owner of Vicodan, slapped Lichtenberg, Kitson and a few others with a federal trademark infringement, dilution, and unfair competition lawsuit in the California Central District Court in Los Angeles in November. The suit stems from the sale of Lichtenberg’s designer drug t-shirts, the jersey-style tees adorned with several prescription drug names, such as Vicodin, Xanax and Adderall, which caused quite a bit of controversy when they hit stores this past summer. Last month, AbbVie won the first round, as the court granted its preliminary injunction, ordering the defendants “not to make the shirts available to the public.” And as of today, the parties have settled the lawsuit.
One matter that is still pending, the rival lawsuits between Brian Lichtenberg (Kitson is defendant in this lawsuit, too) and his brother Chris Lichtenberg and his brand, Alex & Chloe. Christopher Lichtenberg filed his lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court in March 2013 alleging that his brother Brian stole the design of his BALLIN PARIS (a Balmain “parody”) tee. Brian subsequently filed a nearly identical lawsuit in federal court in September, complete with a bunch of hearsay documents as “proof” that it was he, who created the BALLIN design. Last thing we heard, this family drama-turned-legal proceeding is still pending. Now all we need is for Paris-based design house, Balmain, to file a trademark infringement lawsuit against both brothers for trademark infringement. And while Balmain does, in fact, have grounds so file suit, as it has several federally registered trademarks that extend to its name in the specific font that both Lichtenberg brothers are using on their “parodies”, it doesn’t look like that is going to happen.