Friday, November 15, 2013

Design Patent Roundup - Nov. 15, 2013

This weeks new U.S. District Court filings come to us from a variety of industries: from heavy metal product manufacturers, to other, softer areas of the design patent world. Several of these cases present interesting facts and questions of law that we will be eager to see develop in greater detail as the cases progress. Follow us past the jump to learn more.

Chico’s FAS, Inc. v. Wink Intimates, No. 2-13-cv-00792 (M.D. Fla. Nov. 7, 2013)

Om Thursday, November 7, Chico’s, a lingerie maker, filed for declaratory judgment against Wink Intimates Andrea Clair and Anastasios Koskinas, following apparent allegations by Clair and Koskinas that Chico’s OH MY GORGEOUS cami bras infringed three U.S. patents, including U.S. Design Patent No. D622,478. A comparison between the patented design and the accused, OH MY GORGEOUS bra is shown, below. The case has been assigned to Magistrate Judges Sheri Polster Chappell and Douglas N. Frazier. Chico’s is represented by Allen Dyer Doppelt Milbrath & Gilchrist.

LSI Prods., Inc. v. Strand, No. 13-cv-08363 (C.D. Cal. Nov. 12, 2013)

On November 12, 2013, LSI Products sued Ashley Strand, allegedly doing business as Strand Industries, a machinery manicuring company of infringing a single design patent, U.S. Design Patent No. D659,062 for the ornamental design of a recreational vehicle door. There are no other claims asserted against the defendant. A comparison image between the patented door design and the accused product, derived from the plaintiff’s complaint, can be seen below. LSI is represented by Arent Fox. The case has been assigned to Judge Ronald S.W. Lew and Magistrate Judge Michael R. Wilner.

Oakley, Inc. v. Siskiyou Gifts, No. 8-13-cv-01786 (C.D. Cal. Nov. 12, 2013)

Oakley has been featured on the Ordinary Observer before, most recently defeating a motion for summary judgment filed against them in Oakley, Inc. v. Hire Order, Ltd, No. 3:12-cv-02346 (S.D. Cal.). While we have not been able to track every case pending in the district courts in which Oakley is a plaintiff, it is fair to say they have been active in enforcing their design patent rights in recent years.

The case filed by Oakley on November 12, 2013 appears to be a continuation of that enforcement effort. Here, Oakley has sued Siskiyou Gifts, alleging federal and common law trademark infringement, unfair competition, trademark dilution, and infringement of two design patents, U.S. Design Patent Nos. D415,188 and D425,103, directed to eyeglasses. A comparison between a figure from the D’188 patent and a product believed to be a version of Siskiyou’s “NFL Team” sunglasses, is shown below. Oakley is represented by Knobbe Martens Olson & Bear.

Sunlight Supply, Inc. v. Maverick Sun Inc., No. 2-13-cv-02052 (W.D. Wash. Nov. 14, 2013)

On Thursday, Sunlight Supply, Inc. sued Maverick Sun Inc. Both parties are competing producers of indoor gardening and lighting products. Sun has accused Maverick of infringing two design patents, U.S. Design Patent Nos. D657,748 and D660,252, in addition to asserting a number of federal state and common law trademark and trade dress claims. An image of the ornamental design claimed in the D’252 Patent may be seen below, alongside the accused Hydra 4 Lighting Controller. Sunlight is represented by Schwabe Williamson & Wyatt.

One interesting facet of this case, aside from the comparison of the two designs above, relates to the trademark allegations recited in the complaint. Sunlight states that it is the owner of 22 registered trademarks and trademark applications, all bearing names from Greek mythology. In particular, the trademark that the Hydra 4 system is accused of infringing is Sunlight’s registered mark, HELIOS. Reg No. 3,957,794. Maverick’s alleged infringement appears to be premised on the idea that Sunlight’s collection of Greek-themed marks give them an ownership stake in names from Greek mythology, generally, at least with respect to the class of products offered by Sunlight.

We will be eager to see further developments in this case.

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