Goaz v. Rolex Watch U.S.A. Inc. (In the Matter of Goaz)

Citation:
Cas No. 13-10282 (5th Cir. Mar. 19, 2014)
Tag(s):
Ruling:
"Knowingly selling merchandise bearing counterfeit trademarks necessarily causes injury to the trademark." Fifth Circuit affirmed district court's ruling, thereby affirming the bankruptcy court's summary judgment of non-dischargeability under 11 U.S.C. 523(a)(6). Fifth Circuit rejected the debtor's challenge to the "consensed approach" for "willful and malicious injury," reiterating that "[t]he test for willful and malicious injury . . . is condensed into a single inquiry of whether there exists either an objective substantial certainty of harm or a subjective motive to cause harm on the part of the debtor." Citing Williams v. Int'l Bhd. of Elec. Workers Local 520 (In re Williams), 337 F.3d 504, 509 (5th Cir. 2003). Fifth Circuit added that the mere existence of some alleged factual disputes (in this case, whether the evidence supporting plaintiff's summary judgment motion was obtained legally) did not defeat an otherwise properly supported motion for summary judgment. Also, Court held that local counsel did not have to be listed on every document filed in the case. Judgment affirmed.
Procedural context:
Appeal from U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas, which affirmed the bankruptcy court's order granting summary judgment on plaintiff's action to declare a debt non-dischargeable under 11 U.S.C. 523(a)(6).
Facts:
Rolex brought an action against the debtor for non-dischargeability, arguing that the debtor illegally sold watches and thereby inflicted willful and malicious injury upon Rolex and its trademarks by such illegal counterfeiting and sales. Rolex moved for summary judgment, and the bankrutpcy court granted the motion.
Judge(s):
Wiener, Owen and Haynes (per curiam)

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