Summary: CAFC finds appeal of Board’s decision to cancel trademark registration moot.

Case: Cigar King, LLC v. Corporacion Habanos, S.A., No. 2013-1531 (Fed. Cir. May 23, 2014) (non-precedential). On appeal from the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board in Cancellation No. 92053245. Before Prost, Mayer, and Hughes.

Procedural Posture: Trademark owner appealed the Board’s cancellation of two trademark registrations. CAFC dismissed as moot.

  • Trademarks: The Board granted a petition to cancel trademark registrations as a sanction for the trademark owner’s initial failure to respond to the petition and its later failure to respond to discovery requests. After the trademark owner filed its notice of appeal, the Board cancelled the registrations because the trademark owner failed to file affidavits certifying that the marks were still in use. As the marks would remain cancelled even if the judgment were reversed on the merits, the appeal was moot. The court may vacate a judgment that becomes moot on appeal through happenstance or unilateral action of the prevailing party, but here, the unilateral action of the trademark owner rendered the appeal moot. The Federal Circuit therefore dismissed the appeal.