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United States Fourth Circuit

Shammas v. Focarino, 14-1191

In a suit under the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. sections 1051-1141n, the district court's grant of the PTO Director-defendant's request for plaintiff to pay for the government's attorney and paralegal salaries required to defend the action is affirmed where: 1) the imposition of all expenses on a plaintiff in an ex parte proceeding, regardless of whether he wins or loses, does not constitute fee-shifting that implicates the American Rule but rather an unconditional compensatory charge imposed on a dissatisfied applicant who elects to engage the PTO in a district court proceeding; and 2) this compensatory charge encompasses the PTO’s salary expenses for the attorneys and paralegals who represent the Director.

Appellate Information

  • Decided 04/23/2015
  • Published 04/23/2015




  • United States Fourth Circuit


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