Decisions Highlight Need to Rethink IP Protection Strategies for Product Designs

Milton Springut, New York Law Journal

October 18, 2017

 

Supreme Court decisions frequently reflect a significant change in the law.  But the impact of those changes is often not fully understood until the lower courts begin applying a decision to new cases that come before them.  Appreciating the changing legal landscape should act as a spur to re-evaluating one’s legal strategy.

Our recent article in the New York Law Journal, Decisions Highlight Need to Rethink IP Protection Strategies for Product Designs, discusses just such a change.  Earlier this year, the Supreme Court in Star Athletica LLC v. Varsity Brands Inc., 137 S.Ct. 1002 (2017), expanded the scope of copyright protection for designs of useful articles.  Lower court decisions applying Star Athletica are starting to flesh out its effect on copyright protection for such products.  As we discuss in the article, these decisions, in our view, require strategies for protecting decorative designs incorporated into useful articles to be rethought. 

Click here to get this article.