Court: Sale of engagement rings violated trademark laws

Trademarks are an excellent way to protect a company's logo or brand. Companies in New York can register trademarks to prevent competitors or other entities from illegally using their name or logo to promote their own agenda. Further, as a recent case involving Tiffany & Co. illustrates, taking the right measures will ensure that when a dispute arises, the law will side with the trademark.

Costco has been selling engagement rings that it marketed as "Tiffany" rings. The company placed signs in jewelry cases that said "Tiffany." In a lawsuit filed in 2013, New York-based Tiffany & Co. alleges that the rings were not actually Tiffany branded. The suit seeks punitive damages for the high-end retailer. Costco filed a countersuit, alleging that the name "Tiffany" actually refers to a type of ring.

A federal court rejected Costco's argument this month. The court determined that the company broke federal trademark laws. Therefore, the court determined, the company will be liable for both trademark counterfeiting and trademark infringement. A jury will later decide how much, if any, punitive damages will be assessed.

Companies that have a brand need to understand the value of that brand. In this case, Tiffany & Co. knows that people will seek out engagement rings based solely on the Tiffany name. The business did the right thing in pursuing a claim for trademark infringement after Costco tried to capitalize on the brand. Anyone who has questions regarding intellectual property protection and how to put it in place should consult with an attorney.

Source: New York Times, " Tiffany Triumphs in Costco Dispute," Sept. 8, 2015

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Hear From Our Clients

Mr. Skolnik and Mr. Gaboury have represented me on multiple cases over the past two years. They are dependable, knowledgeable, and professional. They provided high quality legal guidance for my small business during a difficult time and brought me a peace of mind. I highly recommend Cox Padmore Skolnik & Shakarchy as your legal business representative. -Anonymous

Read More Reviews

Contact Us

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Tap To Request An Exploratory Consultation

New York Office
630 Third Avenue
19th Floor
New York, NY 10017

Phone: 646-355-1648
New York Office Map

Great Neck Office
98 Cutter Mill Road
Suite 310N
Great Neck, NY 11021

Phone: 646-355-1648
Great Neck Office Map

Hackensack Office
27 Warren Street
Suite 304
Hackensack, NJ 07601

Phone: 646-355-1648
Hackensack Office Map

Denver Office
1060 Humboldt Street
Denver, CO 80218

Phone: 646-355-1648
Denver Office Map