Kim Kardashian West’s company, Kimsaprincess Inc., is being sued for endorsing LuMee, an illuminated cell phone case that takes the perfect selfie.
On Monday, rival company SnapLight filed a patent infringement lawsuit in a California federal court claiming a man named Hooshmand Harooni filed a patent in 2013 for an “integrated lighting accessory and case for a mobile phone device,” and licensed his invention to Snaplight.
However, LuMee claims they were the first ones to patent the illuminated cell phones case. Their website states: “LuMee Case is the original patented and illuminated cell phone case with a reputation for world-class quality. With celebrity fans and customers around the world, it’s no surprise that unauthorized third-party retailers try to pass counterfeit products as the real deal. The LuMee trademark enforcement team works closely with law enforcement and has made a number of arrests, including felony charges of trademark counterfeiting. In addition, LuMee works closely with Customs and Border Protection, identifying and seizing counterfeit cases coming into the country.”
In their lawsuit, SnapLight argues that since Kim Kardashian’s endorsement of the other case provider “it has been extremely difficult for Snaplight to compete in the selfie case market.” Which makes sense, Mrs. West has over 165 million Instagram followers and is always in the public eye. So if she uses a product other people will want to use it also.
On Monday, a rep for Kardashian sent a statement to The Hollywood Reporter calling the lawsuit meritless.
“The patent lawsuit filed by SnapLight has no merit and is just another attempted shakedown. Kim has done absolutely nothing wrong,” the statement reads.
A rep for the other company added the following statement: “LuMee was disappointed to learn about the lawsuit filed against Kim Kardashian West by Snaplight, LLC, alleging patent infringement with regard to her involvement with LuMee. The lawsuit has no merit and Kim has done nothing wrong. LuMee is an innovator of illuminated cell phone cases and was the first to market. Between its patents, copyrights and trademarks, LuMee has developed substantial intellectual property rights surrounding its product line.”
In November, LuMee filed a lawsuit of their own against Snaplight for infringing on its patent. That case is currently pending in Delaware federal court. With both companies claiming they own the patent for the light-up cases it will be up to them to prove to a judge who owned the patent first.
Snaplight is seeking $100 million in damages and is asking the court to stop Mrs. West from endorsing and using the other cases. Clothing retail store Urban Outfitters is also named as a defendant in the suit. The lawsuit claims the company “benefitted financially through increased sales of the LuMee selfie cases.”