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Posted: November 17, 2016

Clothing Designs Other Than Trademarked Logos are Not Protected Intellectual Property

On November 1, 2016, Justice Sherwood of the New York County Commercial Division issued a decision in S.A.S.C.O. Trading, Inc. v. Pamnani, 2016 NY Slip Op. 32243(U), holding that clothing designs were not protected intellectual property, explaining:

Assuming that defendants copied designs created by plaintiffs, such designs appear not to be protected unless the copying extends to a trademarked brand, label or logo associated with the garment. Plaintiffs have not shown that their logo, Straight Faded, is trademark protected and that the trademarked product was used by defendants to market its products to customers. . . . It also appears that clothing design and size specifications are useful articles for purposes of the Copyright Act and thus are not typically copyrightable. Moreover, the copying and sale of knock-off-products as opposed to copying of a trademarked brand or logo gets no protection.

(Internal quotations and citations omitted).

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