An All-Star Decision: Federal Circuit Increases Predictability in Trademark Enforcement

2 November 2018
View Debevoise Update
Key takeaways:
  • The ITC’s earlier decision regarding Converse’s trademark for the design of its Chuck Taylor All-Star sneaker created significant uncertainty about the utility of federal trademark registrations and the predictability of enforcing trademark rights.
  • The Federal Circuit reversed a clear legal error by the ITC in its application of the wrong legal standard to determine secondary meaning and trade dress validity.
  • In its ruling, the court cited an amicus brief submitted by Debevoise on the limitations of using customer surveys to establish historical secondary meaning.