SSJR is pleased to announce that it has successfully opposed a Motion to Sever and Dismiss or Transfer on behalf of its client, Shake-Away, Inc. In September 2008, SSJR filed a complaint on behalf of Shake-Away against the Weiser Group, LLC and Mark J. Weiser in the District of Connecticut, alleging (1) breach of contract, (2) misleading representations under the Lanham Act, (3) unfair competition under the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act, (4) patent invalidity, and (5) patent non-infringement. The Defendants subsequently filed a motion to sever and dismiss or transfer the claims. Specifically, the Defendants moved to sever the patent claims and dismiss them for lack of personal jurisdiction, or, in the alternative, transfer them to the Defendants’ home district in Pennsylvania. The Defendants further moved to dismiss the breach of contract claim and unfair competition claims for lack of subject matter jurisdiction and for failure to state a claim.

On March 22, 2010, the Honorable Alvin W. Thompson issued an order denying the Defendants’ Motion to Sever and Dismiss or Transfer. The Court denied the Defendants’ Motion in its entirety, and ruled in favor of SSJR’s client on all disputed issues raised in the Motion. The Court first held that it had jurisdiction over the breach of contract claim pursuant to a forum selection cause in the contract, and that, in any event, Shake-Away had established personal jurisdiction over the Defendants. Second, the Court concluded that no claims in the case should be severed because the claims are in substance different arguments made in one dispute between the parties over whether the Defendants are engaging in an unlawful effort to compete with SSJR’s client, Shake-Away. Finally, the Court denied the Defendants’ motion to dismiss, holding that Shake-Away’s breach of contract count and unfair competition counts each stated a claim upon which the Court could grant relief.

A copy of the Court’s Order is available here.