The Court of Appeal has reviewed the law on liability and account of profits in a judgment concerning the BEVERLY HILLS POLO CLUB trade mark (Lifestyle Equities C.V. & Anor v Ahmed & Anor  EWCA Civ 675). The case is one of many that are winding their way through the courts concerning this brand. In this litigation, the judge at first instance found that the use of SANTA MONICA POLO CLUB infringed the BEVERLY HILLS POLO CLUB mark and devices, and also found passing off.
The EU General Court has upheld a Board of Appeal ruling in a dispute between Chanel and Huawei, finding that Huawei’s EUTM application for a figurative H/U shape was not similar to Chanel’s Double-C trade mark (Case T-44/20, 21 April 2021). Huawei applied to register the EUTM for goods in class 9 in 2017 (far left). Chanel opposed the Huawei application based on two French trade marks (middle and right): (1) a figurative mark for “Cameras, sunglasses, glasses; earphones and
How can you stop someone from systematically copying your brand? What if it went further than just your designs and covered everything from your marketing strategy to your models? This major new UK fashion case shows the consequences which range from the predictable (copying valid designs has consequences) to the surprising (it isn't necessarily possible to stop all copycat behaviour). This case is a bit of a marathon read but it's a fantastic primer for anyone wanting to und
Image rights are both hugely important and a fallacy. The UK, has no specific law of "image rights" but it is possible to protect a person's image through a patchwork of laws including passing off, trade marks, data protection and privacy. Rosie has contributed a chapter on the UK approach to image rights for Imagen y Derecho de la Moda, a South American Year Book which is available for purchase here! Rosie's article (which is translated into Spanish) provides an overview of
When is an online marketplace “targeting” consumers in a particular jurisdiction? This was the question that Mr Justice Michael Green wrestled with in his judgment in Lifestyle Equities CV & Anor v Amazon UK Services Ld & Ors  EWHC 118 (Ch). The case involved trade mark infringement and passing off claims brought against Amazon regarding the sale of goods bearing the Beverly Hills Polo Club trade marks on amazon.com. The claimants are familiar faces in the English High
Mr Justice Miles’s judgment in Lyle & Scott Limited v American Eagle Outfitters, Inc is an important decision for international fashion brands. The two companies use very similar eagle logos (pictured) for clothing that is sold through similar marketplaces in the UK and internationally. Lyle & Scott (L&S) is a long-standing British high-end fashion brand. It historically made golf clothes but by 2019 around half of its sales were polo shirts and T-shirts which are sold throu
Dr Martens, the footwear and clothing brand that defined my teens, is launching an initial public offering (IPO) which could value the company at £3.7 billion! The company is currently majority owned by Permira (the UK private equity firm). One reason behind this high valuation is that it is a fashion brand that truly recognises the value of its IP (even if it famously once failed to secure the copyright in its logo - see below!).* It sells 11 million pairs of boots and shoes
What does the fashion industry hang on? The Janger is designed for travel and holiday use (so probably isn't getting a lot of use at the moment!) Most fashion cases concern design right, copyright and trade marks. It is relatively unusual for patents and fashion to collide. The Janger Ltd v Tesco Plc  EWHC 3450 (IPEC) (16 December 2020) was one of the last cases from 2020 and one of the few to look at patents and fashion. Janger had a patent for “A hangable garment hook
Are arbitration clauses a good idea? This post is not going to resolve this longstanding debate but it will highlight some of the intended (and unintended) consequences of an arbitration clause. The use of arbitration clauses in trade mark coexistence agreements was recently considered by the UK's IP Enterprise Court (IPEC) in Lifestyle Equities CV & Anor v Hornby Street (MCR) Ltd & Ors. Lifestyle Equities owns six EUTMs and one UKTM (post Brexit that is 7 UKTMs) for BEVERLEY
Is help coming to tackle the scourge of counterfeits sold on online marketplaces? Counterfeit goods affect all businesses as they grow from fashion to merchandise and related goods. On 15 December 2020, the European Commission published its “Europe fit for the digital age” proposals: the Digital Services Act (the DSA) and Digital Markets Act (DMA) . If adopted, they will replace the eCommerce Directive, which was introduced 20 years ago. DSA obligations The DSA is particularl
A case regarding “ballet flats” is likely the last time in which a UK court will sit as a Community Design Court, and the judgment was handed down expeditiously given the end of the Brexit transition period on 31 December 2020. The case involved registered Community designs (RCDs) and unregistered Community designs (UCDs), and issues of both validity and infringement. Deputy High Court Judge David Stone found: both the registered and unregistered design to be valid as they pr
You take a famous car company with a well known trade mark, say Ferrari, and decide that you can get an entirely new revenue stream licensing this mark for use on FMCG products such as clothing. It is a roaring success! Competitors look at this success and think - great idea! Let's copy it... but not all of them clear their rights first. The following is a cautionary tale in more ways than one. I was in charge of this case from its start until well into the disclosure phase.
Designs are one of the key IP rights for the gaming and fashion industries but they are complex and consequently poorly understood. There are two key categories of design: registered and unregistered designs. They are best known for protecting three dimensional products but a little known fact is that they can also protect logos and graphical user interfaces. Given the shift to remote and virtual living, protecting digital assets is more important than ever. The European Comm
We first wrote about the impact of Brexit over a year ago back in a pre pandemic era. Although we still don't have a deal. The outcomes outlined in that post are likely to apply from 1 January 2021 (i.e. the end of the Brexit transition period). It is no longer possible to file an EU mark and get it registered before the end of the transition period (31 December 2020). Therefore all new EU trade mark filings will need to be filed separately in the UK if trade mark rights in t