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Haas Steiner Infringed IP Rights?

Haas Automation, the sponsor of Haas F1 team, has entered into legal proceedings in the US against former team principal Guenther Steiner on the basis that he has allegedly infringed a number of their trade marks.

In April 2023, Steiner published an autobiography titled ‘Surviving to Drive: A Year Inside Formula 1: An F1 Book’. The book included photographs of Haas F1 team’s drivers, race cars featuring Haas trade marks, and Steiner wearing clothing containing Haas trade marks.

Haas’ argument is that Steiner has infringed its trade marks and that the infringement is likely to deceive consumers as to the team’s affiliation with the book. They have stated that “Haas Automation never consented to Steiner’s use of the Haas Automation trade marks or the Haas Automation trade dress on the accused product” and are seeking to recover damages.

This comes after Steiner made his own claim against Haas alleging that his image, name, and likeness were being utilised without permission following the termination of his employment by the team.

It is to be seen in whose favour the court will decide.

If you have any questions on the above, feel free to contact a member of the team at 0191 281 4000 or alternatively at legal@mcdanielslaw.com.

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