Block, Inc., which rebranded from Square in 2021, is a financial service product company started by former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey. The company dipped its toe into the tax preparation arena when it purchased Credit Karma Tax (now renamed Cash App Taxes). While Block, Inc. was already treading on thin ice with a name similar to H&R Block, the Cash App Taxes logo was the last straw: a green square. In late 2021, H&R Block sued Block, Inc. for trademark infringement.1
In April 2022, a federal district judge granted H&R Block’s motion for an injunction that Block, Inc. could not use advertising, press releases, or social media to communicate its relationship to Cash App Taxes. Block, Inc. appealed the injunction, saying that if it had to change its name again it would cause irreparable damage.
But at the end of January 2023, the Eighth Circuit ruled that H&R Block had failed to provide evidence of “actual consumer confusion” — or, that anyone had used Cash App Taxes thinking it was an H&R Block product. Cash App Taxes is a phone app, while H&R Block has in-person, online, and retail tax software services. The court found that H&R Block needed more than just social media posts and media articles as evidence of actual consumer confusion over the two brands.2