Christopher A. Cole, Partner Washington, D.C.
ccole@crowell.com
Phone: +1 202.624.2701
1001 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, D.C. 20004-2595

Christopher Cole is the co-chair of Crowell & Moring's Advertising & Product Risk Management Group in the Washington, D.C. office. Chris practices complex commercial litigation and regularly advises regarding the development, substantiation, approval, and defense of advertising campaigns. He frequently represents companies that have complex product development, reputational, and marketing concerns that require overlapping and multifaceted solutions, not only in court, but also before federal regulatory agencies. In this work, he has represented some of the world's leading companies in industries such as food and beverages, media and telecommunications, and consumer products. Chambers USA, which rates firms and lawyers, ranks Chris among the top eight false advertising litigators nationwide, and quotes clients who have described him as "outstanding – very responsive and hard-working." The Legal 500 describes Chris as having "a reputation and a level of knowledge that is second to none." Chris also regularly appears before the National Advertising Division (NAD), where he has achieved some of the most notable results for his clients in that forum over the last decade. Chris has successfully litigated many other types of cases, including patent, copyright, unfair competition, consumer class actions, general commercial litigation, and government enforcement proceedings.

Chris is a highly sought-after speaker on advertising and green marketing issues and a frequent media commentator on legal developments in the area, having been quoted in publications such as the New York Times, AdAge, Business Week, Bloomberg, and Law360. He co-teaches a course through the Institute for Perception on advertising claims substantiation, and serves as an instructor for the National Institute of Trial Advocacy.

Representative Matters:

  • Represented AT&T in NAD challenge to T-Mobile's claims to have "America's Largest 4G Network."
  • Represented AT&T in NAD challenge to Verizon's advertising claims that its smartphones are twice as fast as any AT&T smartphone.
  • Represented Beachbody in Lanham Act false advertising litigation regarding comparative fitness claims.
  • Represented Zero Technologies in simultaneous Lanham Act false advertising litigation and NAD challenge involving allegedly false claims regarding water filter performance. 
  • Represented Kimberly-Clark in a variety of NAD challenges against Procter & Gamble, both as challenger and advertiser, for products ranging from paper towels to diapers.
  • Represented Expedia in Lanham Act false advertising litigation challenging claims by Priceline regarding cost savings.
  • Represented 3M in Lanham Act false advertising litigation against a competing manufacturer of high-end, home furnace filters.
  • Represented MillerCoors in challenge by Anheuser-Busch to claims for packaging technology.
  • Represented Dyson in Lanham Act false advertising action brought by Hoover and Maytag to stop Dyson's iconic "No Loss of Suction" advertising claim.
  • Represented Scotts in Lanham Act challenge to comparative efficacy claims made by Terracycle in advertising for its organic, "worm poop" garden products.
  • Defended and actually litigated numerous cases brought by the FTC alleging serious violations of Section 5 of the FTC Act, including claims relating to weight loss, efficacy of dietary supplements, telemarketing, and negative option marketing and sales techniques.
  • On behalf of Miller Brewing, obtained preliminary injunction against advertisements falsely claiming that Miller was owned by South African Breweries and is not American.
  • Defended MillerCoors and Bavaria, S.A. in copyright litigation brought by photographer claiming that his work was used without permission on brand materials.


Affiliations

Admitted to practice: District of Columbia, Massachusetts (inactive), U.S. District Courts for the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Eastern District of Wisconsin, and U.S. Courts of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, Federal Circuit, and Court of Veterans Benefits Claims

Memberships:
Past Chair, Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA)
Vice Chair, ABA Antitrust Section, Committee on Private Advertising Litigation



Speeches & Presentations

  • "What's in a Claim? Principles and Requirements of Claim Substantiation," 35th Annual BAA/PMA Marketing Law Conference, Chicago, Illinois (November 18-20, 2013). Panelist: Christopher A. Cole.
  • "September Consumer Protection Update," ABA Section of Antitrust Law, Consumer Protection, Private Advertising Litigation, Privacy and Information Security, and Corporate Counseling Committees Webinar (September 20, 2013). Panelists: Christopher A. Cole, Cheryl A. Falvey, and Michael L. Kuppersmith.
  • "Sustainable 'Green Advertising': Implications of FTC's Guidelines for Public, Private, and Self-Regulation," WLF Web Seminar (February 21, 2013). Presenters: Christopher A. Cole and Natalia R. Medley
  • "Consumer Protection and What Obama's 2nd Term Means to Your Business (Including Advertising; Data/Privacy Protection; Product Safety & More)," Association of Corporate Counsel San Francisco Bay Area Chapter, San Francisco and Palo Alto, CA (February 12-13, 2013). Presenters: Bridget E. Calhoun; Christopher A. Cole; Cheryl A. Falvey; John Fuson.


Publications



Client Alerts & Newsletters



In the News

  • Consumer Protection Regulation To Watch In 2014
    January 1, 2014 — Consumer Protection Law360

    Cheryl A. Falvey and Christopher A. Cole, co-chairs of Crowell & Moring's Advertising & Product Risk Management Group, spoke with Consumer Protection Law360 about the regulations to watch in 2014. They discussed the areas of debt collection reform, financial advertising, and data security and the "Internet of Things."


  • At Crowell, A Different Type of Legal Advertising
    September 8, 2013 — Washington Post

    Advertising & Product Risk Management (APRM) Group partners and Group co-chairs Chris Cole and Cheri Falvey are profiled in the Washington Post's Capital Business section for their leadership and growth of the practice. The article highlights the strengths they each bring to the firm, and the unique ability of the APRM Group; "Now the group advises on the entire life cycle of consumer products, from their creation to safety testing, advertising campaigns, product recalls and designing consumer tests to back up marketing claims — which is almost like a science," Cole states. Additionally, Falvey highlights, "part of the reason she joined Crowell was because the firm's leaders understood that the science that must be conducted to back up marketing claims is the same science that federal regulators look at when evaluating the safety of products."
  • Conferences: Planning, Coordination, Consistency Urged In Talks Geared to Business and Its Counsel
    March 25, 2013 — Bloomberg BNA Product Safety & Liability Reporter

    Crowell & Moring LLP's second annual Advertising & Product Risk Management seminar is featured in Bloomberg BNA Product Safety & Liability Reporter in a piece titled, "Planning, Coordination, Consistency Urged In Talks Geared to Business and Its Counsel." According to the piece, "A holistic approach to risk management, integrating legal and business concerns, works best for companies throughout the life cycle of their products."




Firm News & Announcements

Jan.31.2014 Crowell & Moring Among Law360's "Practice Groups of the Year" for Competition, Consumer Protection, and Government Contracts
Sep.03.2013 The Best Lawyers In America 2014 Recognizes 41 Crowell & Moring Attorneys
Sep.01.2013 Super Lawyers 2013 Recognizes 64 Crowell & Moring Attorneys
May.24.2013 Chambers USA Ranks 45 Crowell & Moring Attorneys and 19 Leading Practice Areas Among Best in U.S.
Mar.11.2013 Crowell & Moring Advertising & Product Risk Management Annual Seminar to Feature Industry Leaders and Key Government Officials
Dec.12.2012 Crowell & Moring Gains Prominent False Advertising Litigation Partner Chris Cole
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