February 06, 2018 Top Story

Foreign Online Sales Extends Personal Jurisdiction Across the Atlantic

Decision opens door to potential deluge of website based personal jurisdiction claims

By Andrew J. Kennedy

A U.S. District Court has held that a German Internet company will need to face U.S. litigation because its online U.S. sales were enough to confer specific personal jurisdiction. Observers are divided on whether the decision potentially opens the door to sweeping claims of personal jurisdiction for online companies.

iStockphoto by Getty Images

A Trademark Dispute

Plixer filed a trademark infringement suit against Scrutinizer GmbH, a German company, for allegedly infringing its SCRUTINIZER mark. The German company had no physical presence in the U.S., but it offered cloud-based services on an interactive website that attracted customers from around the world, including in Maine. The U.S. District Court for the District of Maine allowed limited discovery on the issue of whether it had specific personal jurisdiction over it.

Premium Content For:
  • Litigation Section
Join - Now