WASHINGTON, D.C. — An attorney told the Supreme Court at oral arguments on Feb. 20 that his client did not violate the Bankruptcy Code when it stripped a former licensee of the right to continue use of a trademark following a voluntary petition under Chapter 11 (Mission Product Holdings Inc. v. Tempnology LLC, No. 17-1657, U.S. Sup.).
LOS ANGELES — A candle maker on Feb. 11 sued another candle company in a California federal court, asserting claims for copyright and trademark infringement and violation of California’s unfair competition law (UCL), alleging that the company made and sold candles using its artwork and federally registered proprietary names (Indio Products, Inc. v. CSP Yemaya International, Inc., et al., No. 2:19cv1018, C.D. Calif.).
HOUSTON — Adopting a magistrate’s recommendation, a Texas federal judge on Feb. 7 denied an online retailer’s motion to dismiss a Lanham Act lawsuit over its alleged sale of counterfeit goods for lack of jurisdiction, finding that good cause exists to conduct limited discovery as to whether Texas jurisdiction is proper (Danny Huynh v. Zurno Inc., No. 4:18-cv-01756, S.D. Texas, 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 20360).
SAN JOSE, Calif. — A California federal judge on Feb. 7 held that an underlying contempt proceeding against an insured fails to assert a claim for covered "damages" under a general liability insurance policy, further finding that the policy’s intellectual property and unfair competition exclusions also bar coverage (Great American E&S Insurance Company v. Theos Medical Systems, Inc., No. 17-05660, N.D. Calif., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 21143).
WASHINGTON, D.C. — With scheduled Feb. 20 oral arguments fast approaching in a dispute over whether the U.S. Bankruptcy Code permits a trademark licensor to reject a license upon filing for bankruptcy, a former licensee tells the U.S. Supreme Court in its Feb. 8 reply brief that statutory and congressional context demonstrate that the license remained in effect after the filing (Mission Product Holdings Inc. v. Tempnology LLC, No. 17-1657, U.S. Sup.).
TRENTON, N.J. — A labor union on Feb. 6 objected to the confirmation of the reorganization plan for Chapter 11 debtor Duro Dyne National Corp., telling a New Jersey federal bankruptcy court that the plan fails to address the union’s $7.6 million proof of claim for the company’s alleged infringement and counterfeiting of the union’s trademark on doors it manufactured (In re: Duro Dyne National Corp., et al., No. 18-27963, D. N.J. Bkcy.).
SAN DIEGO — Although a California federal judge found that a dietary supplement maker sufficiently pleaded injury from purportedly false statements made by a competitor in an online review about its product, the plaintiff’s failure to establish the statements’ falsity ultimately led the judge to dismiss its Lanham Act and trade libel claims Feb. 5 (GOLO LLC v. Higher Health Network LLC, et al., No. 3:18-cv-02434, S.D. Calif., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18506).
CHARLESTON, S.C. — In a Feb. 5 ruling, a South Carolina federal judge rejected a prevailing trademark infringement plaintiff’s request for reimbursement of $237,824 in attorney fees, upon disagreeing with the plaintiff that the case qualifies as exceptional (SafeRack LLC v. Bullard Company, No. 17-1613, D. S.C., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18253).
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Chanel Inc. prevailed against the operators of several dozen websites that were offering counterfeit Chanel goods on Feb. 5, when a Florida federal judge granted its motion for default judgment and awarded it damages, injunctive relief and control over the offending websites (Chanel Inc. v. Bestaaachanel.com, et al., No. 0:18-cv-63018, S.D. Fla., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 17846).
RICHMOND, Va. — A divided Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 4 affirmed a Virginia federal judge’s determination that the Booking.com trademark has acquired secondary meaning, as well as that regardless of who prevailed, Booking.com should reimburse the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) $51,472.53 in attorney fees (Booking.com v. Andre Iancu, Nos. 17-2458, -2459, 4th Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 3456).
SAN ANTONIO — A plaintiff’s request for preliminary injunctive relief on allegations that an architectural firm infringed the “Arch-Con” trademark should be denied, a Texas federal magistrate judge recommended Feb. 1 (Arch-Con Construction Company v. Archcon Architecture Ltd., et al., No. 18-821, W.D. Texas., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 16941).
BOISE, Idaho — The Idaho Supreme Court on Jan. 29 affirmed a lower court’s ruling that a commercial business insurance policy’s prior publication exclusion relieves the insurer of its duty to defend its insured against an underlying trademark dispute (Scout, LLC v. Truck Insurance Exchange, et al., No. 45349, Idaho Sup., 2019 Ida. LEXIS 12).
BOSTON — A Massachusetts federal judge on Jan. 29 allowed testimony from competing experts in a dispute over whether a maker of greeting cards falsified documents in a trademark and copyright row with another card company (LovePop, Inc. v. Paper Pop Cards, Inc., No. 17-11017, D. Mass., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 14035).
TRENTON, N.J. —A New Jersey federal judge on Jan. 28 granted summary judgment on a counterclaim seeking cancellation of two trademarks, agreeing with defendants that their cousins are not entitled to the registrations, which incorporate the last name “Anello” (Steven Anello, et al. v. VCA Sons Inc., et al., No. 13-3074, D. N.J., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 13894).
CINCINNATI — In a Jan. 28 holding, the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals found that it lacks jurisdiction to hear an appeal of a Michigan federal judge’s grant of summary judgment to a defendant accused of trademark and patent infringement (Wesley Corporation, et al. v. Zoom T.V. Products, et al., No. 18-1646, 6th Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 2785).
WASHINGTON, D.C. — An August 2018 finding by the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that a visual artist’s trade dress claim was preempted by the Copyright Act will stand, thanks to a denial of certiorari Jan. 22 by the U.S. Supreme Court (Bruce Munro, et al. v. Lucy Activewear Inc., et al., No. 18-615, U.S. Sup.).
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals correctly found that a visual artist was not entitled to trade dress protection for his artistic light display, a women’s sportswear chain asserts in a Dec. 13 brief opposing the artist’s petition for certiorari and arguing that there is no overlap between trade dress and copyright law that needs review by the court (Bruce Munro, et al. v. Lucy Activewear Inc., et al., No. 18-615, U.S. Sup.).
SAN FRANCISCO — The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 15 found that although a California federal judge abused his discretion in dismissing, as a sanction, allegations of trademark infringement and unfair competition, his earlier dismissal for failure to state a claim was proper (Applied Underwriters Inc. v. Larry J. Lichtenegger, et al., No. 17-16815, 9th Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 1291).
WASHINGTON, D.C. — In a Jan. 14 ruling, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals found no error in a decision by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board that affirmed an examining attorney’s refusal to register “Casalana” on grounds of failure to demonstrate use in commerce (In re: Siny Corp., No. 18-1077, Fed. Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 1136).
WASHINGTON, D.C. — In a Jan. 9 merits respondent brief, a trademark holder tells the U.S. Supreme Court that under “extraordinary authority” in the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, it was permitted to terminate a trademark license, stripping its former licensee’s rights to continue use of the once-licensed marks (Mission Product Holdings Inc. v. Tempnology LLC, No. 17-1657, U.S. Sup.).