When Trade Dress Laws Extend Too Far

Law360, New York (January 2, 2013, 12:39 PM EST) -- Intellectual property laws serve important and worthwhile purposes; copyright and patent laws protect creativity and innovation while trademark laws enable companies to differentiate themselves and their products from the competition and build successful brands. The Lanham (Trademark) Act is the primary federal trademark statute of law in the United States, and prohibits a number of activities, including trademark infringement, trademark dilution and false advertising. Under certain circumstances, the protections of the act can extend to the unique packaging, or “trade dress,” of a product. Yet sometimes...
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