IP Law Watch

Legal issues, law and regulations concerning the world of IP.

 

1
Federal Circuit Relaxes Standard for Design Patent Obviousness Challenges
2
Design Series – Episode 1: M&S v Aldi: Guidance on Enforcement of Registered Designs in the UK
3
US Supreme Court Rules No Three-Year Limit for Copyright Damages
4
USPTO Considering Changes to Enforceability of Patents Subject to a Terminal Disclaimer
5
Levi Strauss Settles Trademark Dispute Over Pocket Tab on Jeans
6
Federal Circuit Finds Declaratory Judgment Jurisdiction Over Patent Owner Through Amazon APEX Agreement
7
Guidance on use of Artificial Intelligence-Based Tools in Practice Before the United States Patent and Trademark Office
8
The UKIPO Updates its Policies to Tackle Ineffective Addresses for Service
9
Chanel Seeks Permanent Injunction Against WGACA
10
A Lidl Decision With Big Implications–Court Of Appeal Edition

Federal Circuit Relaxes Standard for Design Patent Obviousness Challenges

On 21 May 2024, the Federal Circuit overturned the Rosen-Durling test used to assess non-obviousness of design patents. In LKQ Corporation v. GM Global Technology Operations LLC, the Court en banc ruled the same conditions for patentability that apply to utility patents apply to design patents, specifically holding the obviousness rationale articulated in KSR International Co. v. Teleflex Inc., 550 U.S. 398 (2007), will now apply to design patents. LKQ Corp. v. GM Glob. Tech. Operations LLC, No. 2021-2348, 2024 WL 2280728, at 1 (Fed. Cir. May 21, 2024) (en banc).

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Design Series – Episode 1: M&S v Aldi: Guidance on Enforcement of Registered Designs in the UK

Marks & Spencer (M&S) and Aldi were at loggerheads again over an alleged IP infringement. Having already publicly contested their dual production of caterpillar cakes, their latest dispute concerned festively decorated gin bottles. 

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US Supreme Court Rules No Three-Year Limit for Copyright Damages

On 9 May 2024, the US Supreme Court (the Court) held that there is no three-year limit on monetary damages for timely filed copyright infringement claims. The 6–3 decision resolves a circuit split, opens the doors to larger potential damages awards for plaintiffs, is likely to lead to increased litigation over older infringements, and leaves open the question of whether the “discovery rule” applies to copyright infringement claims. Warner Chappell Music, Inc. v. Nealy, No. 22-1078, 601 U.S. – (2024).

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USPTO Considering Changes to Enforceability of Patents Subject to a Terminal Disclaimer

On 10 May 2024, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking aimed at changing the current practices surrounding terminal disclaimers. The proposed change could have substantial effects on the enforceability of patents that are subject to a terminal disclaimer.

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Levi Strauss Settles Trademark Dispute Over Pocket Tab on Jeans

Levi Strauss continues enforcement of its Tab trademark against other fashion companies. On May 7, 2024, just a couple months after filing suit against Brunello Cucinelli, Levi Strauss voluntarily dismissed its lawsuit. Levi’s filed suit against the Italian luxury fashion brand in the Northern District of California in January 2024 alleging infringement of Levi’s rectangular pocket tab trademark. Levi’s dismissed the suit after reaching a confidential settlement.

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Federal Circuit Finds Declaratory Judgment Jurisdiction Over Patent Owner Through Amazon APEX Agreement

On 2 May 2024, the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (the Federal Circuit) entered its decision in SnapRays, dba SnapPower v. Lighting Defense Group,1 holding the submission of an Amazon Patent Evaluation Express (APEX) Agreement against infringing third-party product listings is a “purposefully directed extra-judicial patent enforcement activit[y]” subjecting the patent owner to personal jurisdiction in the alleged infringer’s home state.2

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Guidance on use of Artificial Intelligence-Based Tools in Practice Before the United States Patent and Trademark Office

On 11 April 2024, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) published guidance (referred to herein as the Guidance) on the use of artificial intelligence (AI) based tools, including generative AI, in practice. The USPTO recognizes the benefits of AI and while practitioners are not presently required to disclose whether AI is used as a drafting tool there are a variety of duties that arise with its use. The Guidance outlines the current USPTO policies and illustrates how these rules interact with the use of AI tools. Below, we will highlight different uses of AI tools and provide an overview of potential risks the USPTO discusses in the Guidance.

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The UKIPO Updates its Policies to Tackle Ineffective Addresses for Service

The UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO) has released an update this month in relation to the issue of trade mark applicants and owners providing a valid address for service. Particularly following Brexit there has been concerns about would-be trade mark owners filing applications with false or ineffective addresses for service and as a result the UKIPO is now taking a more proactive approach using their powers under Rule 11 of the Trade Mark Rules 2008.

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Chanel Seeks Permanent Injunction Against WGACA

The public legal dispute between luxury brand Chanel and luxury reseller What Goes Around Comes Around (WGACA) continues with Chanel seeking a permanent injunction that WGACA argues is too broad. As previously reported, a New York jury previously awarded Chanel a US$4 million verdict against WGACA for sales of counterfeit Chanel-branded products Chanel, Inc. v. What Goes Around Comes Around, LLC, et al., 1:18-cv-02253 (SDNY). 

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A Lidl Decision With Big Implications–Court Of Appeal Edition

The Court of Appeal of England and Wales upheld the previous judgment (see here) that Tesco Clubcard logos infringed Lidl’s trade marks and constituted passing off. Although it found that Tesco did not infringe Lidl’s copyright, it is time for Tesco to rebrand its Clubcard logo.

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