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Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Ind. Decisions - One Indiana decision from the 7th Circuit today

In Custom Vehicles v. Forest River (ND Ind., Judge Miller, Jr.), a 10-page opinion, Judge Posner concludes:

In the absence of registration, a producer can still obtain relief by proving that the defendant is using a mark that “is likely to cause confusion . . . as to the origin, sponsorship or approval of his or her goods.” Lanham Act, § 43(a), 15 U.S.C. § 1125(a); Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Samara Bros., Inc., 529 U.S. 205, 209 (2000); 5 McCarthy on Trademarks and Unfair Competition, supra, § 27:14. But as we said earlier, without proof of secondary meaning there is no basis for thinking a descriptive mark the name of a brand—no basis therefore for supposing that consumers would think Forest River’s van “Work and Play” had been produced by Custom Vehicles instead. AFFIRMED.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on February 7, 2007 12:31 PM
Posted to Ind. (7th Cir.) Decisions