In August 2010, Cartier filed suit against HauteLook in the Southern District of New York Court, alleging that the "flash sale" site had damaged the luxury goods maker's brand by selling damaged and second-hand Cartier merchandise without authorization to do so. According to Cartier's 36-page complaint, which charged Hautelook with making false claims regarding advertising and trademark infringement, Cartier asserted: HauteLook is "causing immediate and irreparable harm to the Cartier brand and trademark." Cartier claimed that HauteLook has sold used Cartier watches despite maintaining on its website that it "never" sells "secondhand merchandise, ever." Cartier further stated in its complaint that HauteLook sold Cartier goods that "were damaged, were shipped in the wrong packaging, or carried defaced authenticity certificates, and sometimes included a Cartier warranty booklet though the warranty did not apply." In its suit, Cartier was seeking injunctive relief, compensatory and triple damages, and other remedies for a total of $2 million+.
Following the filing of its complaint, Cartier released a statement saying that the lawsuit is intended to protect clients from misleading online sales practices, as well as "the trusted Cartier name and what it stands for." The brand has and continues to spend an extraordinary amount of time, money and effort in building and maintaining its luxury brand image in the marketplace.
The parties appear to have since settled the lawsuit out of court, not surprisingly.