0370 270 6000

The end is nigh for the copycat?

22 September 2009

Pimms recently took on Pitchers, and now a few weeks later, Next take on Tesco’s. Next has filed claims alleging that the supermarket has copied up to five of its clothing lines and stolen two design motifs originally designed by Next.

Brand owners have always recognised the value that exists in their designs and their brand. They spend a considerable sum of money to try and protect the rights that they hold in this Intellectual Property (IP). However, over the years copycats have exploited the limited protection that the Courts have afforded brand owners.

Now, it looks like brand owners are ready to have another go at getting the Courts to recognise and protect their IP rights.

However, the Courts seem to be distinguishing “imitation” – i.e. so similar that the public may be confused as to who owns the brand – and “comparison” – where the product is so different that there is no real confusion just an opportunity for consumers to choose the brand they prefer.

Related opinions

IR35 rules to be scrapped from April 2023

The Chancellor’s recent mini-budget provided a significant announcement for business as it was confirmed that the off-payroll working rules (known as “IR35”) put in place for public and private sector businesses from 2017 and 2021 will be scrapped from April 2023.

View blog

80% hours for 100% pay? That’ll do nicely

As has been widely reported this week, some 3,000 UK workers are taking part in a six month trial to assess the viability of a four-day working week without any reduction in their normal pay.

View blog

Right to Work Checks: Changes from 6 April 2022

From 6 April 2022, right to work checks on all migrant or settled prospective employees must be online and checks on British or Irish nationals will be manual (free) or digital (charged for).

View blog

Are whistleblowers entitled to keep their employer’s confidential documents?

In Nissan v Passi, the High Court recently considered the issue of an employee retaining confidential documents belonging to his former employer in the context of the employer’s application for an injunction seeking the return of such documents from the employee.

View blog

Mailing list sign up

Select which mailings you would like to receive from us.

Sign up