Redskins respond to US Patent Office siding with Obama, Reid in trademark ruling

The Washington Redskins attorney was quick to reply to Wednesday ruling by the U.S. Trademark Trial and Appeal Board. They were unimpressed since it’s not the team’s first attack on its logo and previous rulings have been overturned.

For Immediate Release
June 18, 2014


LOUDOUN COUNTY, Va. – The following is a statement by Bob Raskopf, trademark attorney for the
Washington Redskins, regarding today’s split decision by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board:

“We’ve seen this story before. And just like last time, today’s ruling will have no effect at all on the team’s
ownership of and right to use the Redskins name and logo.
‘Redskins Are Denied Trademarks’
-Washington Post, April 3, 1999

‘Redskins Can Keep Trademark, Judge Rules’
-Washington Post, October 2, 2003
We are confident we will prevail once again, and that the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board’s divided ruling
will be overturned on appeal. This case is no different than an earlier case, where the Board cancelled the
Redskins’ trademark registrations, and where a federal district court disagreed and reversed the Board.
As today’s dissenting opinion correctly states, “the same evidence previously found insufficient to support
cancellation” here “remains insufficient” and does not support cancellation.
This ruling – which of course we will appeal – simply addresses the team’s federal trademark registrations, and
the team will continue to own and be able to protect its marks without the registrations. The registrations will
remain effective while the case is on appeal.

When the case first arose more than 20 years ago, a federal judge in the District of Columbia ruled on appeal in
favor of the Washington Redskins and their trademark registrations.


As the district court’s ruling made clear in 2003, the evidence ‘is insufficient to conclude that during the
relevant time periods the trademark at issue disparaged Native Americans…’ The court continued, ‘The Court
concludes that the [Board’s] finding that the marks at issue ‘may disparage’ Native Americans is unsupported
by substantial evidence, is logically flawed, and fails to apply the correct legal standard to its own findings of
fact.’ Those aren’t my words. That was the court’s conclusion. We are confident that when a district court
review’s today’s split decision, it will reach a similar conclusion.


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