Thursday, July 3, 2014

Cert Grant on Issue Preclusion in Trademark Case

The Supreme Court has granted cert in a trademark infringement case involving a collateral estoppel issue.  The questions presented in B&B Hardware, Inc. v. Hargis Industries, Inc., No. 13-352, are:

(1) Whether the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board’s finding of a likelihood of confusion precludes respondent from relitigating that issue in infringement litigation, in which likelihood of confusion is an element; and (2) whether, if issue preclusion does not apply, the district court was obliged to defer to the Board’s finding of a likelihood of confusion absent strong evidence to rebut it.

Hat tip: Professor Ira Nathenson, who also explained that the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board is not an Article III court, and that the nature of Likelihood-of-Confusion inquiries can vary between the TTAB and the District Court.

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/civpro/2014/07/cert-grant-on-issue-preclusion-in-trademark-case.html

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