Trademark Litigation

News & Analysis as of

Supreme Court Rules That TTAB Decisions Can Have Preclusive Effect in Infringement Actions

The ruling creates new risks to assess in TTAB litigation strategies. On March 24, the US Supreme Court decided in the case of B&B Hardware, Inc. v. Hargis Industries, Inc. that a decision by the Trademark Trial and...more

Alert: Supreme Court Holds that Trademark Board Rulings on Confusion May Bind Later Infringement Litigation

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that Trademark Trial and Appeal Board ("TTAB") decisions on likelihood of confusion in disputes over registration may preclude relitigation of the issue in a later suit for trademark...more

SCOTUS Today: TTAB Decisions, Not Federal Courts Will Be Final Arbiter in Many Trademark Cases

Tuesday the Supreme Court, in B&B Hardware Inc. v. Hargis Industries Inc. et al., case number 13-352, decided that Trademark Trial and Appeal Board ("TTAB") decisions preclude federal courts from ruling on issues that are...more

Lucky Brand Not So Lucky

The Second Circuit ruled last week in favor of Plaintiff Marcel Fashion Group Inc. (“Marcel”), vacating the trial court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of Defendant Lucky Brand Dungarees, Inc. (“Lucky Brand”), which had...more

Suggestive or Descriptive Marks: An “Expert’s” View

On February 28, 2015, the Southern District of New York denied a motion to exclude the testimony and survey of an expert witness regarding whether a trademark was descriptive or suggestive. In Rise-N-Shine, LLC v. Robin...more

TAKETEN and TAKE10! Can Coexist Without Confusion - In Re St. Helena Hospital

The U. S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit reversed the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board’s (the Board) decision, concluding that the trademark TAKETEN used for a residential health improvement program can co-exist...more

Fifty-Six Hope Road Music, Ltd. v. A.V.E.L.A., Inc. - USCA, Ninth Circuit, February 20, 2015

Following jury verdict on Lanham Act claim in favor of entity owned by Bob Marley’s children, Ninth Circuit affirms denial of defendants’ motion for judgment as matter of law, finding that trial evidence supported jury’s...more

All-Star Tips To Avoid Infringement Litigation

Shoes are always in the news. From a fashion standpoint, Nike has made headlines this week, with a re-release of the Classic Cortez running shoe (aka, the Forrest Gump shoe) along with the second edition of the LeBronald...more

Supreme Court Finds Trademark Tacking to Be a Jury Question - Hana Financial, Inc. vs. Hana Bank, et. al.

The Supreme Court of the United States, in a unanimous decision stated that “because the tacking inquiry operates from the perspective of the ordinary purchaser or consumer, we hold that a jury should make this...more

The Court’s Decision in the FLANAX US Trademark Dispute Gives Bayer a Headache

On February 6, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia reversed the US Trademark Trial and Appeal Board’s ruling in Bayer Consumer Care AG v. Belmora LLC, 110 USPQ2d 1623 (TTAB 2014) holding that...more

Supreme Court Considers Impact of TTAB "Likelihood of Confusion" Finding on Trademark Infringement Litigation

On December 2, 2014, the United States Supreme Court heard oral argument in B&B Hardware, Inc. v. Hargis Industries, Inc.. The question before the Supreme Court is how much deference, if any, a federal district court hearing...more

Business Round-Up: Eponymous companies and use of the designer’s personal name: Mr. Alviero Martini vs. Alviero Martini S.p.A.

Alviero Martini recently decided to bring an appeal against the decision of the Court of Milan, in the proceedings brought against Alviero Martini S.p.A., which acquired the trademark “Alviero Martini Prima Classe”....more

Protecting Trademarks and the Likelihood of Confusion Factor

A few years ago, I wrote a column addressing a case in which Pom Wonderful LLC sued Coca Cola Company in connection with the marketing of one of its pomegranate-blueberry juice products. That case dealt with whether one of...more

Trademark use within an expressive work must only pass the Rogers test, not a likelihood of confusion analysis: Mil-Spec Monkey v....

The likelihood of confusion test is often called the “cornerstone” of trademark infringement law. It may be in many circumstances, but it does not apply to allegations of infringement within expressive works, as the recent...more

The Katten Kattwalk - Issue 06

In this issue: - “Google It”: The Search Engine’s Trademark May Be a Verb, But It’s Not Generic - You Say “Tom‘ah’to,” I Say “Tom‘ay’to”: Determining the Correct Pronunciation of Uniquely Coined...more

For the Redskins, NFL Playoff Season Means. . . Constitutionality Questions?

The NFL playoffs aren’t the only big football news happening this month! The U.S. Department of Justice recently decided to intervene in the Washington Redskins trademark litigation over the constitutionality of certain...more

Trademark Review | January 2015

Diageo Enforces Trade Dress Rights in its CROWN ROYAL Drawstring Bag - Diageo owns a registration for the mark CROWN ROYAL for whiskey. Diageo has sold its CROWN ROYAL whiskey in a purple drawstring bag for many...more

Supreme Court Rules on “Tacking” and District Court Distinguishes Dish Network from Aereo

Hana Financial, Inc. v. Hana Bank – What You Need to Know - Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court held that whether two trademarks may be tacked for purposes of determining priority is a question for the jury, because...more

Supreme Court Decides Hana Financial, Inc. v. Hana Bank

On January 21, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Hana Financial, Inc. v. Hana Bank, No. 13-1211, holding that whether two trademarks are “legal equivalents” creating a single, continuing commercial impression and may be...more

Sue-per Bowl Shuffle 2014: The Year in NFL-Related Intellectual Property Litigation

Heading into this year’s Super Bowl party season, there are two things every lawyer should be concerned about. First, why can’t your team get it together? Second, what do you do if you are asked to explain to your friends and...more

Nothin’ from Nothin’ Leaves Nothin’

Axiom Worldwide Inc. v. Excite Medical Corp. et al. - The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit affirmed a district court’s $1.32 million judgment in favor of a medical device maker, ruling that it never owned...more

Low Octane Levels? Octane Fitness’ Impact in the Trademark and Trade Secret Realms

We have previously addressed the Supreme Court’s decision in Octane Fitness, LLC v. Icon Health & Fitness, Inc., 12-1184, Slip Op. at 7 (2014), which relaxed the standard for awarding attorney’s fees under Section 285 of the...more

Recapping 2014: IP Cases in New York State

New York State and its four U.S. district courts – the Northern District (N.D.N.Y.), Southern District (S.D.N.Y.), Eastern District (E.D.N.Y.), and Western District (W.D.N.Y.) – have been well-known venues for IP cases. How...more

Wonderful End of 2014 for Pom Wonderful

Pom Wonderful received an early New Year’s present from the Ninth Circuit last Tuesday. A lower court had denied Pom Wonderful’s motion to enjoin the company doing business as Pur Beverages from using “pom” on its...more

Trademark Trends: Back-to-Back Arguments in Trademark Cases at SCOTUS

The Supreme Court heard oral argument in trademark cases on consecutive days this month. On December 2, 2014, the issue of whether a finding by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) of likelihood of confusion precludes...more

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