Design Patent

News & Analysis as of

If The UK Votes To Brexit (Depart From The EU), How Will Your IP Rights Be Affected?

On June 23, 2016 the United Kingdom (UK) and Gibraltar will vote in a referendum to remain in or leave the European Union (EU). If the UK votes to leave, according to Article 50 of the European Union Treaty, the...more

Protecting the Next Big App

Due to our ever-increasing dependence on mobile devices, we use mobile apps daily, whether to try and defeat Candy Crush® or to quickly order a pizza. Indeed, many of you may be reading this article via mobile app....more

Design Patents and Trade Dress

I often get asked by clients to discuss the differences between design patents and trade dress. Both are intellectual property protections that protect similar aspects of a product—the appearance and aesthetic features. Last...more

Intellectual Property Bulletin - Spring 2016

Supreme Court to Weigh In on Damages for Design Patent Infringement - Recent decisions from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit regarding damages available in design patent cases highlight the court’s...more

IP Infringement Claim Against Canadian Company Stays in U.S.

Where should a lawsuit be heard? Canada? The US? In other posts we discuss the idea of a “choice of law” and “forum selection” clauses in contracts. In those cases, the parties agree to a particular forum in...more

Reflecting on Design Patents

Often the appearance of an article is attributable to the nature of the surface as much as its shape. Reflective surfaces are often depicted in design patent drawings as parallel lines...more

Using Design Patents to Claim Functional Elements???

A recent opinion from the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Sport Dimension, Inc. v. The Coleman Co., No. 2015-1553, 7 (Fed. Cir. 2016), held that design patents can provide protection for ornamental...more

What Happens in the U.S. Stays in the U.S.: IP Dispute Against Canadian Company Will Not be Moved to Canadian Forum

Although motions to dismiss or transfer a case based on a forum non conveniens theory typically focus on the relative merits of two U.S. jurisdictions, this theory may also be applied when a party claims that a case brought...more

Federal Circuit Reverses Claim Construction of Design Patent That Ignored Functional Elements

Applicants for design patents should consider claiming functional aspects of their designs in addition to the purely ornamental elements as part of their claiming strategy to achieve the broadest protection for their designs....more

An Illuminating Discussion About Design Patents

Design patents protect the aesthetic appearance of a product or portion of the product. The aesthetic appearance is affected by a number of things, including whether the product is illuminated. However, how does one capture...more

Federal Circuit Patent Updates - April 2016

Mankes v. Vivid Seats Ltd. (No. 2015-1909, 4/22/16) (Taranto, Schall, Chen) - Taranto, J. Vacating judgment on the pleadings dismissing cases for inadequately pleading divided infringement and remanding for...more

Functional Features in Design Patents

The treatment of functional features in design patents was discussed in the recent Federal Circuit case for Sport Dimension, Inc. v. The Coleman Company, Inc., Case No. 15-1553 (Fed. Cir. 2016). The Court rejected the...more

It is Error to Ignore Functional Structures Entirely in a Design Patent Construction

In Sport Dimension, Inc. v. The Coleman Company, [2015-1553] (April 19. 2016) the Federal Circuit vacated the stipulated judgment of non-infringement of U.S. Patent No. D623,714 on a personal flotation device, and remanded...more

An Animated Review of Design Patents

Design patents protect the appearance of articles of manufacture, and this includes articles of manufacture whose appearance changes over time. In particular, animated displays on computers and other electronic devices can...more

Iconography

It is pretty well known that icons can be protected with design patents, however we continue to adhere to the fiction that it is not the icon we are protecting, but the substrate decorated with the icon that we are...more

The History, Purpose and Benefits of Patents

Britain has the longest known continuous patent system. British patents can be traced to the 15th Century, when the British Crown began granting exclusive rights, called “Letters Patent,” to certain manufacturers and traders....more

The Smart Phone Patent Saga Continues - Apple Inc. v. Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., et al.

In a case involving suits, countersuits and multiple appeals by the two giants of the mobile phone space, the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit reversed a jury’s finding of infringement, voiding the accompanying...more

Yet Another Bite at this Apple: Damages in Design Patent Cases - Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. v. Apple Inc.

The Supreme Court of the United States has now agreed to review a 2015 decision by the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit regarding the proper measure of damages in cases of design patent infringement. Samsung...more

The Supreme Court Emerges From Its Carbon Freeze on Design Patents

When we last left our story, Jedi combatants Apple and Samsung were circling the Supreme Court imploring it to review their dispute involving design patents—an area of the law that the Court has not touched in over a century....more

Supreme Court Decides to Hear Samsung v. Apple, Appears Ready to Weigh-In on Patent Damage Calculations

This week, in Samsung Electronics Co. v. Apple Inc., No. 15-777, the Supreme Court granted Samsung’s petition for certiorari and agreed to hear the case about Apple’s smartphone design patents in its upcoming term. This will...more

While a Nice Place, Canada is not the Best Place to Litigate U.S. IP

In Halo Creative & Design Limited v. Comptoir des Indes Inc., [2015-1375] (March 14, 2016), the Federal Circuit reversed the Northern District of Illinois’ dismissal of Halo’s complaint for copyright, trademark and U.S....more

The Supreme Court - March 2016 #3

The Supreme Court of the United States issued one per curiam decision on March 21, 2016: Caetano v. Massachusetts, No. 14-10078: Massachusetts enacted a law prohibiting the possession of stun guns. That law was upheld...more

Protecting GUI Designs in Australia: More Questions than Answers

Many countries allow graphical user interface (GUI) features to be protected by registered designs. The current position in Australia is not clear. The position of the Australian Designs Office, which is responsible...more

Drilling Down: Court Invalidates Design Patent on Wellbore Centralizer Due to Lack of Ornamentality

In an unusual patent claim construction order on March 2nd, a federal district court held a design patent invalid for functionality. This is a relatively rare outcome because claim construction in design patent cases is often...more

Design Patents – Unlocking the Value of The User Experience

The oft-overlooked design patent has seen somewhat of a revival recently (at least in the media) ever since a jury in California awarded Apple $399 million in damages — i.e., all Samsung profits from the sale of several of...more

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