Lifestyle Lift Holding, Inc. v. Leonard Fitness, Inc.

Liability of Web Site Operators – Lifestyle Lift Holding, a Michigan company that licenses the use of its name to cosmetic facial surgeons in 38 offices across the country, sued Justin Leonard, an Arizona resident whose web site www.infomercialscams.com allows Internet users to post, and read, comments on the utility of products sold through television infomercials, include the so-called “Lifestyle Lift.” Lifestyle claimed that by including its name in the post-domain path of the pages of its web site that contain reviews of its product, and by including its name in headlines on those pages, Leonard violated its trademark rights and  engaged in false advertising.  Representing Leonard, Public Citizen moved to dismiss the complaint because Leonard cannot be sued in Michigan because in any event the First Amendment protects his truthful use of the Lifestyle Lift name on pages discussing the product and because the trademark laws do not forbid such use.

The trial court did not reach the issue of jurisdiction but rejected Lifestyle’s claims on the merits.