New Cases and Developments

NACUA's Legal Resources staff summarizes current higher education cases and developments and provides the full text of selected cases to members. New cases and developments are archived here for up to 12 months.  Cases provided by Fastcase, Inc.

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Trademark & Licensing; Intellectual Property; Due Process; Constitutional Issues

Robbie Wolff v. Excelsior College (D. Nev. August 28, 2017)

Order granting Defendant’s Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Personal Jurisdiction. Plaintiff, a test-prep business in Nevada that prepares materials for the Clinical Performance in Nursing Examination (CPNE®) administered by Defendant, Excelsior College, sought a declaration that he had not infringed on Defendant’s trademark rights when using the term “CPNE” in his test-prep materials. The court found that the case did not arise out of Defendant’s forum-related activities – two cease-and-desist letters to Plaintiff, as well as solicitation and acceptance of Nevada residents for its remote learning programs – and thereby failed to establish the requisite elements for specific-jurisdiction. As a result, the court granted Defendant’s Motion to Dismiss without leave to amend and denied as moot and without prejudice all other pending motions. 

Trademark & Licensing; Intellectual Property

American InterContinental University, Inc. v. American University (N.D. Ill. Aug. 14, 2017)

Memorandum Opinion and Order granting Plaintiffs leave to propose an appropriate jurisdiction for transfer. Career Education Corporation (CEC), the parent corporation of American InterContinental University, Inc. (AICU), filed a trademark application for the mark “American InterContinental University” and a logo. American University (AU) filed an opposition to the application, claiming a likelihood of confusion with AU's registered marks. CED and AICU then filed suit requesting a declaratory judgment that their trademark does not infringe on AU's trademarks, that their continued use of their marks does not violate state law, that any claims of infringement brought by AU are limited by the defenses of laches and acquiescence, and that AU's registered trademark is invalid due to abandonment and lack of ownership. AU has moved to dismiss the suit for lack of personal jurisdiction. The court found that it lacked personal jurisdiction over AU because the University is not based in Illinois and the suit did not arise out of AU’s contacts with Illinois. However, the court reserved its dismissal of the case until it has had the opportunity to consider the possibility of transfer.