California music lovers may be interested to learn that a three-judge panel in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has denied an Oregon-based rock band's application to trademark its name. The Asian-American band is named Slants, and its trademark application was rejected on the basis that the band name is a racial slur.
Some California business owners may be unaware that the business methods they employ may be patented. Although there used to be an exception preventing patenting business plans, a 1998 decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals did away with it.
California residents and others elsewhere may put a trademark on certain things. If a company creates a new logo or uses a color combination that sets it apart from other companies, it can claim exclusive commercial use of that creation. However, many trademark mistakes could lead to legal disputes in the future.
California residents might be interested to learn about the outcome of a patent infringement case involving Ford Motor Company. On March 27, Ford announced that a U.S. jury had ruled in its favor after the company was sued for allegedly violating four patents. Further, the Tacoma, Washington, jury found that the plaintiff had stolen Ford's trade secrets.
If you are a creative person in Sacramento, it is likely that you have works that you want to protect. Whether you have written a book, made paintings or developed software, ensuring that your work is safeguarded from copycats is an important part of a strong business plan.
In its first trademark case in nearly a decade, the Supreme Court has decided that rulings by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board can have a preclusive effect on future trial court litigation. The 7-2 decision reversed an earlier ruling by the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals, which had upheld an earlier trial court decision. The case, which will also have implications for California companies involved in trademark enforcement, involves a 16-year dispute between B&B Hardware, Inc. and Hargis Industries.