Tuesday, October 20, 2009, 9:10 PM

With Furniture Market Comes A New Round Of Suits (And One Settlement!)

For this Fall 2009 Furniture Market, we have nice variety of cases involving intellectual property and furniture (I'll save the settlement news for last):

1. Hillsdale Furniture, LLC v. Trade Masters, LLC, Civil No. 09-cv-798 (M.D.N.C.) (filed Oct. 13, 2009) - In its complaint, Hillsdale Furniture alleges copyright infringement, breach of contract, unfair/unfair competition/palming off under North Carolina common law, and violation of North Carolina Unfair and Deceptive Trade Practices Act. Hillsdale alleges that Trade Master infringes its rights in its "Milan Collection." The breach of contract claim arises out of Trade Master's alleged breach of an agreement to cease selling alleged infringements in March 2008. The Milan Collection includes dining tables, chairs, and bar stools, an example of which is shown below:

2. Amini Innovation Corporation v. Acme Furniture Industries, Inc., Civil No. 09-cv-7427 (C.D. Cal.) (filed Oct. 13, 2009) - In its complaint, Amini alleges that Acme is engaging in trademark infringement under the Lanham Act, federal and state common law trademark infringement, federal unfair competition, and state unfair competition among other allegations. Amini's complaint centers around Acme's use of the names "Monte Carlo," "Eden," "Tuscan," "Tuscany," "Torino," and "Venetian" in conjunction with Acme's furniture collections. Amini owns federal trademark registrations for "Monte Carlo Collection," "Torino Collection," "Tuscano Collection," and "Venetian Collection" (with "Collection" having been disclaimed).

3. Knoll, Inc. v. Richard Racana, Jr. & Associates, Inc. d/b/a European Furniture Importers, Civil No. 09-cv-8585 (S.D.N.Y.) (filed Oct. 8, 2009) - In its complaint, Knoll accuses Racana of trademark infringement and false designation of origin under the Lanham along with the usual New York state law claims. The thrust of Knoll's allegations is that Racana is importing infringing versions of the Barcelon Chair, Barcelona Stool, Barcelona Couch, Barcelona Table, the Flat Brno Chair. Knoll has federal trademark registrations on the Barcelona Chair, Barcelona Couch, and the Barcelona Table. Images of the Barcelona collection and Brno Chair are below:

And, now for the settlement:

Furniture Today reports that Casana Furniture and Coaster Co. have settled a patent infringement lawsuit filed in the United States District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina. In the complaint, Casana alleged patent infringement, trade dress infringement, unfair competition, and unfair and deceptive trade pratices. Interestingly, the settlement allows Coaster to continue making the accused designs without change. More information on the settlement may be found here.


Anonymous Simona said...

Nice to see that people are still coming up with new styles and new ideas in our furniture world. Keep up the good work!

October 27, 2009 at 10:31 AM  
Anonymous Samantha said...

Thanks for your ideas, These type of furniture are so stylish, modern

January 1, 2010 at 4:32 AM  
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January 2, 2010 at 1:48 AM  
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