By  on November 27, 2019

Nike Inc. and Skechers USA Inc. have been locked in a yearslong patent battle over sports shoe designs, highlighting a tricky question in patent law: How do you show that a contested design has already been done before? 

Nike sued Skechers in 2016, claiming that the latter’s Burst and Flex shoes copied its patented designs in the Nike Free 3.0, Nike Free 4.0 and Nike Flyknit Air Max shoe models released a few years earlier. The patents at issue cover diagonal and V-shaped threaded designs on shoe uppers and three-dimensional block-shaped designs on the soles.

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