BLOGS: Furniture Law Blog

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Monday, October 22, 2012, 9:42 PM

What Do Furniture Knockoffs and Lice Have in Common?

The New York Times says:
Knockoffs are to many furniture manufacturers what lice are to the parents of elementary schoolchildren: a perennial problem, and one that is devilishly hard to eradicate. Legal protections exist in the form of trade dress and trademark rights, the design equivalent of copyright protection.
In a recent article by Julie Lasky in the NYT's Home & Garden Section, the Times looks a few recent examples of knockoffs and how the parties involved are handling them, such as the matter of the Emeco Navy Chair and the RH (the company formerly known as Restoration Hardware) replication thereof.  The article does a good job of describing the current landscape of furniture design "knockoffs" and ways to protect furniture designs, including trade dress and trademarks.  However, one overlooked tool for furniture companies is design patents.

The full article can be found by clicking here.


Tuesday, October 16, 2012, 8:48 AM

Keeler Talks IP & Furniture

Furniture Today's Editor-in-Chief Ray Allegrezza recently interviewed Keeler Furniture's Tom Guido about Keeler's philosophy when it come to protecting innovation in the furniture industry through intellectual property right.  The video can be seen here.

Mr. Guido's comments ring true; "knockoffs" of both furniture and related hardware are increasing due to outsourcing.  Getting a company and its suppliers to understand and leverage the value of intellectual property makes all the difference in procuring, protecting, and managing a company's intellectual property assets.


Wednesday, October 3, 2012, 2:16 PM

Should Trademark Holders Seek a Jury Trial in IP Litigation?

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C.—Under what circumstances should a legal team seek a jury trial in intellectual property litigation? Managing Intellectual Property magazine asked several noted litigators, including Womble Carlyle’s Jake Wharton, this question in their October 2012 issue.

Wharton says that “For a trademark owner, requesting a jury usually makes sense when the main issue to be determined is likelihood of confusion.” However, under other circumstances—such as when a trademark owner expects a defendant to raise trademark ownership questions—a bench trial may be more appropriate, Wharton tells Managing Intellectual Property.

Click here to read the full article.
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