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Sarah Bro is the office managing partner for the Firm’s Orange County office. She focuses her practice on trademark prosecution, enforcement and brand portfolio management, as well as licensing, due diligence, copyright, right of publicity and domain name matters. Read Sarah Bro's full bio. 

Eye Don’t: No Counterfeiting Without Likelihood of Confusion


By on Oct 15, 2020
Posted In Trademarks

Referring to the act of counterfeiting as “hard core” or “first degree” trademark infringement, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit for the first time confirmed that the Lanham Act requires a likelihood of confusion in order for the trademark holder to prevail on a counterfeiting claim. Arcona, Inc. v. Farmacy Beauty, LLC,...

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Diamonds to Dust? Too Many Factual Disputes Precludes Summary Judgment


By on Aug 26, 2020
Posted In Trademarks

The US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit vacated a district court’s summary judgment grant in favor of a fine jewelry producer for trademark infringement, counterfeiting and unfair competition because factual disputes exist around whether the accused infringer’s use of the word “Tiffany” was merely descriptive of a particular ring setting, thereby supporting a...

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“Salacious” Content Doesn’t Bar Discovery in Copyright Infringement Suit


By on Jul 30, 2020
Posted In Copyrights

The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit preserved discovery options for copyright owners fighting online piracy when it reversed the district court’s refusal to allow a subpoena of an alleged online infringer’s internet service provider. The DC Circuit found that the district court abused its discretion by relying heavily on the...

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Knock It Off, Knockoffs? Ninth Circuit Affirms Trade Dress Rights but Not Fame


By on Jul 9, 2020
Posted In Trademarks

Taking on issues of functionality and fame relating to trade dress rights, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit affirmed in part and reversed in part the district court’s judgment after a jury trial on claims of infringement and dilution of trade dress rights in furniture. The Ninth Circuit distinguished utilitarian functionality from...

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Copyright Office, Not Courts, Determines Validity of Registrations Containing Inaccurate Information


By on Jun 10, 2020
Posted In Copyrights

With the validity of a copyright registration at issue, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reversed and remanded a district court’s judgment after a jury trial and award of attorney’s fees in favor of the plaintiff in a copyright infringement action, holding that the district court was required to request the Register...

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Prayer for Declaratory Relief Invokes Copyright Act and Available Attorneys’ Fees


By on May 28, 2020
Posted In Copyrights

Vacating the district court’s order denying a defendant’s recovery of attorneys’ fees under the Copyright Act, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held that, even when asserted as a claim for declaratory relief, any action that turns on the existence and potential infringement of a valid copyright invokes the Copyright Act and...

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What’s the Deal with Comedians?: Too Late for Copyright Claim against Seinfeld


By on May 19, 2020
Posted In Copyrights

In a non-precedential ruling by summary order, the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a copyright infringement lawsuit filed against famed comedian Jerry Seinfeld, finding that the defendant’s claims, which accrued in 2012, were time-barred. Christian Charles v. Jerry Seinfeld, et al., Case No. 19-3335 (2d Cir. May 7,...

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Don’t SULKA: Trademark Plaintiff Must Demonstrate Intent, Ability to Use Mark


By on May 14, 2020
Posted In Trademarks

The US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a complaint seeking a declaration of trademark abandonment, finding that the plaintiff (the co-owner of an online business that sells to customers in India and Thailand) was unable to demonstrate a case or controversy absent evidence that he was prepared to immediately...

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CBD Products in the Time of COVID-19: Best Practices for Making Your (Trade)mark


By on May 4, 2020
Posted In Trademarks

In the midst of an unprecedented and unsettling global pandemic, one constant remains: certain entrepreneurial-minded folks will not miss the opportunity to file trademark applications for new “brands” that align with the latest news cycle. COVID-19 is no different. The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has experienced a swell of new US trademark...

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Supreme Court: Profit Disgorgement Available Remedy for Trademark Infringement, Willful or Not


By on Apr 30, 2020
Posted In Trademarks

Resolving a split among the circuits regarding whether proof of willfulness is necessary for an award of a trademark infringer’s profits, the Supreme Court of the United States issued a unanimous decision holding that the plain language of the Lanham Act has never required a showing of willful infringement in order to obtain a profits...

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