Mark Sommers is a Partner with Finnegan. He is frequently named as one of the nation’s elite trademark litigators and practitioners. Peer reviews and rankings, like World Trademark Review 1000 and The Legal 500, place him at the very pinnacle of the profession. Praise for Mark in the WTR 1000 is effusive: “Mark blends formidable legal skills with plain street-smarts. He is seasoned and comfortable in the court, and can distill down complicated issues and facts and then smoothly present them;” “he is a superlative lawyer, with superb legal know-how and an acute business sense; he is the perfect outside counsel. A battle-tested litigator, his skills are mature, and he operates with surgical precision…Mark is comfortable in court and has magnificent intuition;” “…a lightning rod for praise, as one client states: ‘Simply put, I can think of no other attorney more creative, efficient and effective or for whom I have greater respect;’” “he is the complete package: a convincing advocate, a masterful strategist and a real-world counsellor who adds tremendous value and exceeds even the loftiest expectations.”
Mark provides a full range of services in the trademark, unfair competition, and false advertising arena, including litigation before the federal district courts, federal appellate courts, and Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO); strategic portfolio review and counseling; trademark and name clearance and prosecution; infringement analysis; empirical research and surveys; damages; intermediary liability; and rights of publicity.
Long ranked among the top trademark lawyers in the United States and around the world by The Legal 500 U.S., World Trademark Review 1000, World IP Review, and assorted others, Mark has handled a vast array of trademark, trade dress, product configuration, unfair competition, domain name, diversion, design, false advertising, and rights of publicity cases. Given his decades of experience, Mark has also gained a reputation for masterminding and implementing comprehensive strategies targeted at acquiring and enforcing core branding rights, while culling or aggregating bloated brand portfolios, resulting in substantial cost savings to clients.
In addition to representing the interests of top-tier U.S. brand owners, Mark also represents many European and Asian leading brand owners, where he has gained an appreciation of foreign companies’ sensitivity to U.S. practice and procedure. He has authored numerous articles about trademarks and unfair competition. He frequently presents to both U.S. and international audiences and regularly provides press commentary on high-profile, newsworthy trademark and related cases, developments, and issues.
The MLB baseball team formerly known as the Cleveland Indians has a new name that pays homage to the history of Cleveland. The team last rebranded in 1915, when it left behind its former name, the “Naps” (short for “Napoleons”) in favor of the “Indians.” Now, over a century later, the team has joined other sports franchises in retiring Native American names, mascots, and imagery imbued with negative and racist connotations. With the help of actor and Cleveland Indians fan Tom Hanks, the baseball team announced on July 23, 2021 that it would adopt a new name: the Cleveland Guardians.