Inside the Law: Competitor’s Bad Behavior

July 19, 2018 - 3:45 am

By Amy E. Feldman, Judge Technology Solutions​

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) -- If your competitor doesn’t play by the rules, can you sue?

Last September, federal prosecutors filed charges for bribing student athletic recruits to steer them toward certain schools and footwear companies including, according to the charges, Adidas. 

Adidas’s competitor Sketchers has now filed a false advertising suit against Adidas, claiming that by bribing athletes, Adidas fooled consumer into believing that up-and-coming basketball players chose Adidas products because of their superior performance, denying Sketcher’s ability to develop street cred. 

If your competitor is charged with wrongdoing, do you have a claim? 

To win a lawsuit, you can’t just show that your adversary is a bad guy; you must prove that his actions harmed you.

Even if the bribery charges are proven, Sketchers would still have to prove that kids would think Sketchers were cool if only Adidas hadn’t bribed athletes. But perhaps Sketchers figures that in marketing, getting your name out there is a win, regardless of whether it will be a win on the court or in the court.