Chief Judge James M. Rosenbaum of the U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota entered a consent judgment on March 17 in favor of Faegre & Benson LLP client Shock Doctor, Inc., permanently enjoining competitor XO Athletic from infringing a patent owned by Shock Doctor relating to mouthguard technology. XO Athletic consented to the permanent injunction, agreeing to withdraw the mouthguards in question from the market.
Shock Doctor filed suit in 2007 to prevent XO Athletic from entering the market with a protective mouthguard asserted to infringe a 1994 Shock Doctor patent covering Shock Doctor's Gel Max™ mouthguard. Shock Doctor claimed that a subsequent redesign by XO Athletic also infringed the patent.
In 2008, Judge Rosenbaum granted Shock Doctor's motion for preliminary injunction. In his order, the judge found "a substantial likelihood" that both XO Athletic mouthguard designs infringed the Shock Doctor patent. The court also rejected XO Athletic's arguments of undue hardship, noting "a high probability that defendant knew it was marketing an infringing product."
XO Athletic appealed the preliminary injunction to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. A three-judge panel upheld the preliminary injunction in favor of Shock Doctor. The recent consent judgment converted the preliminary injunction into a permanent injunction against XO Athletic.
"We are pleased to reach resolution on this case," said Steven Coopersmith, senior vice president of marketing for Shock Doctor. "The Gel Max Mouthguard is one of our flagship products and reflects our commitment to creating superior products that protect all athletes. Shock Doctor invests heavily in research and collaboration with medical professionals to develop technologically advanced gear, and this result supports our ability to continue to do so."
Faegre & Benson partner William L. Roberts, lead counsel for Shock Doctor on this matter, said he is satisfied with the outcome of the case. "This marks a major victory in our ongoing efforts to protect one of Shock Doctor's core products. We are pleased that the defendant has consented to a permanent injunction that will prevent further infringement of our client's patented technology."
Faegre & Benson represented Shock Doctor in all phases of the lawsuit. In addition to Roberts, the litigation team included intellectual property lawyers John L. Crimmins and Kevin P. Wagner.