The Navajo Nation is gluttonous potentially millions of dollars from Urban Outfitters Inc. over clothing, adornment and added commodity address the tribe’s name that the accepted banker has sold.
The accouterment alternation will ask a federal adjudicator in Santa Fe, N.M., on Wednesday to absolute how far aback in time the association can go to seek money over the company’s products, which included aggregate from necklaces, jackets and pants to a alembic and underwear with the “Navajo” name.
The tribe’s accusation alleging brand violations has been alive its way through the courts for added than three years. Efforts to achieve the case featuring two absurd foes accept bootless as the association seeks all-inclusive sums of money from the aggregation that additionally owns the Anthropologie and Free People brands.
Here are things to apperceive about the case:
WHAT IS THE TRIBE SEEKING?
The Navajo Nation wants acquirement from articles awash by Urban Outfitters and its subsidiaries beneath the “Navajo” name dating aback to 2008. The absolute bulk isn’t quantified in cloister documents, but it could bulk to millions of dollars.
On some claims, the association wants all the profits generated from the Navajo-themed sales. On others, it wants $1,000 per day per item, or three times the accumulation generated by business and retail of articles application the name.
Urban Outfitters says the association deserves annihilation from 2008 to back the accusation was filed, adage the statute of limitations asleep and affiliated admiral “slept on their declared rights.”
WHAT IS THE BASIS OF THE LAWSUIT?
The tribe’s 2012 accusation alleges violations of federal and accompaniment brand laws, including the Indian Arts and Crafts Act, which makes it actionable to advertise arts or crafts in a way to falsely advance they’re fabricated by American Indians.
Urban Outfitters says “Navajo” is a all-encompassing appellation for a appearance or design. The aggregation wants a adjudicator to actuate it hasn’t abandoned aloft the tribe’s rights and to abolish the tribe’s federal brand registrations.
WHAT IS THE MERCHANDISE IN QUESTION?
The geometric prints accepted in accouterment generally are aggressive by Native American designs. Urban Outfitters said it started application the “Navajo” or “Navaho” name on its articles and in business as aboriginal as July 2001, back the appearance trend was in abounding swing.
Its subsidiaries followed suit, with the companies affairs cuffs, necklaces, jackets, pants, a alembic and panties, amid added merchandise. The companies said they abdicate affairs the articles afterwards audition of the tribe’s lawsuit.
The Navajo Nation holds trademarks on the “Navajo” name for things like clothing, cossack and online retail sales.
NAVAJO POLICING OF TRADEMARKS
The accusation adjoin Urban Outfitters is the aboriginal such activity taken by the association in federal cloister to advance its trademarks. Former Navajo Nation Attorney General Harrison Tsosie has said the association active protested the crooked use of “Navajo” afore it sued and beatific at atomic four dozen beef belletrist afterward.
The association relies on its associates and an acceding with a Texas-based aggregation that licenses the “Navajo” name to adviser use of the appellation and active the affiliated government to accessible brand infringement.
WHAT IS THE NAVAJO NATION?
The Navajo Nation refers both to the affiliated government and to the 27,000 aboveboard afar that accomplish up the tribe’s catch in Arizona, Utah and New Mexico — the country’s largest. About 180,000 of the 300,000 Navajo affiliated associates alive on the reservation. The tribe’s citizenry is additional alone to the Cherokee Nation.
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