Välinge has filed an action for patent infringement in the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware against Halstead New England Corp., part of the Halstead International Group (Halstead) and Home Depot Inc. (Home Depot) “for the wrongful importation, marketing and sales of LVT and WPC flooring products marketed under the names ALLURE ULTRA, ALLURE ISOCORE and TRAFFICMASTER. It is believed that these products are being manufactured in China under license from the company Innovations4Flooring (I4F).”
In this lawsuit, Välinge asserts that the defendants by using, importing and/or selling the products in question infringe multiple claims in no less than 9 different Välinge patents duly and properly issued by the United States Patent and Trademark Office, including: (a.) U.S. Patent No. 7,398,625; (b.) U.S. Patent No. 7,763,345; (c.) U.S. Patent No. 8,021,741; (d.) U.S. Patent No. 8,365,499; (e.) U.S. Patent No. 8,584,423; (f.) U.S. Patent No. 8,658,274; (g.) U.S. Patent No. 8,756,899; (h.) U.S. Patent No. 8,834,992; and (i.) U.S. Patent No. 9,249,581.
In response, John Rietveldt, I4F CEO, stated, “This frivolous and unsubstantiated U.S. lawsuit against one of its own customers is but another example of how Välinge is trying to stamp out freedom of choice in the flooring industry through legal intimidation.”
He also claims that after a legal evaluation by I4F: “Välinge’s announcement inaccurately names brands not represented by Halstead, as well as highlights patents completely unrelated to the allegedly infringing product brands. Furthermore, the US patent for a locking system on the long side is alleged as infringed even though Välinge knows the same patent’s European equivalent was recently nullified. I4F is also currently in legal proceedings to nullify the Dutch part of another Välinge European Patent - EP 1084317.”