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Michael R. Justus

Washington, DC Office

Michael R. Justus is a trademark and advertising attorney. He helps clients create, promote, protect and enforce global brands.

Mike maintains a comprehensive trademark practice, including US and international enforcement, litigation, clearance, prosecution, licensing and counseling. Mike also provides advertising counseling and litigation services, including reviewing client advertising materials and handling proceedings before federal courts, the National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus (NAD) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

In his trademark practice, Mike handles enforcement and litigation matters in and out of court. He has handled lawsuits before federal courts around the country and numerous proceedings before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board. Mike also collaborates with local counsel around the world to formulate global enforcement and litigation strategies. His experience includes managing comprehensive trademark enforcement programs for several famous brands in the insurance, fashion, construction equipment, and aerospace and defense industries. Mike regularly negotiates creative settlements to end or avoid disputes, including through mediation, and has prepared numerous coexistence, consent, license, assignment and other agreements. He also guides clients through the entire trademark clearance and registration process using customized, cost-effective global protection strategies, from initial selection and clearance of new marks to obtaining US and foreign registrations.

In his advertising practice, Mike handles disputes and counsels clients relating to compliance issues under the Lanham Act, FTC regulations and guidance, NAD precedent, state consumer protection laws, and other laws, regulations and standards. For example, Mike has handled NAD disputes involving "Made in USA" claims, "compare to" product labels, social media ads, online consumer reviews, and a wide variety of performance and comparative claims. He has served as lead advertising counsel for clients in the clothing and health care industries.

Mike is active in the International Trademark Association, currently serving as subcommittee co-chair of the Leadership Development Committee. He regularly speaks and authors articles regarding trademark and advertising topics for various legal and business organizations and publications.

Shown below is a selection of Michael’s engagements.

Litigation and Disputes
  • Representation of an insurance company in an appeal before the US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, with extensive motion practice, of a favorable cybersquatting and trademark infringement verdict that was affirmed in favor of the client.
  • Representation of a construction and mining equipment company in a successful trademark opposition before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board, resulting in a finding that the client's mark was famous among the general consuming public.
  • Representation of consumer products companies in several NAD challenges with favorable results.
  • Representation of a real estate company in an investigation by the FTC.
  • Representation of a kitchenware company in a design patent lawsuit in Washington federal court; obtained dismissal on summary judgment for the client.
  • Representation of a consumer products company in a trademark infringement lawsuit in Florida federal court, resulting in a favorable settlement for the client.
  • Representation of an aerospace company in a trademark infringement and dilution lawsuit in New York federal court, resulting in a favorable settlement for the client.
  • Representation of a sporting goods company in a trademark infringement and dilution lawsuit in California federal court, resulting in a favorable settlement for the client.
  • Representation of a consumer electronics company in a trademark infringement and dilution lawsuit in Texas federal court, resulting in a favorable settlement for the client.
  • Representation of an insurance company in a trademark infringement and dilution lawsuit in Connecticut federal court, resulting in a favorable settlement for the client.
  • Lead advertising review and compliance counsel for a major health care company.
  • Global trademark counsel for large US-based companies in the paint and coatings, aerospace and defense industries.
  • US trademark counsel for major European fashion brands.
  • Advertising counsel for large companies in the food, medical products and clothing industries.


Super Lawyers Rising Stars, Washington, DC, 2014–2018
October 22, 2012
"Offbeat Page in the Branding Playbook: Savvy Companies are Leveraging Nontraditional Trademarks in the Sports Industry and Beyond," National Law Journal
March 1, 2012
"Click-Through Forum Selection Clause Rejected," The Licensing Journal
July 22, 2011
"Coach, Inc. v. Gata Corp., 98 USPQ2d 1911 (D.N.H. 2011)," IPFrontline
July 22, 2011
"IP Addresses for IP Attorneys: A Primer on Emerging Issues," BNA's Patent, Trademark & Copyright Journal
January 24, 2011
"No One Owns The Cloud," InformationWeek
December 9, 2010
"Cleared for Knock-Off: Counterfeiting at 30,000 feet," BlueSky Business Aviation News
December 14, 2009
Co-author, "Worldwide Certification-Mark Registration a Certifiable Nightmare," Bloomberg Law Reports (Republished in Bloomberg Law Quarterly and Landslide (ABA))
April 1, 2009
"Trade Dress Protection: Eye Candy," Medical Marketing and Media
Michael R. Justus


  • JD, Wake Forest University School of Law
  • BS, Pennsylvania State University

Bar Admissions

  • District of Columbia
  • Virginia

Court Admissions

  • US Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit
  • US District Court, Eastern District of Virginia
  • US District Court, Western District of Virginia


Super Lawyers Rising Stars
Washington, DC, 2014–2018
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  • International Trademark Association
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