Panko Quoted on Major Trends for Trademarks in 2024
Ross said that the aftermath of the US Supreme Court’s 2023 ruling in Jack Daniels v. VIP Products is one issue to keep an eye on.
"I think it will be interesting to monitor the federal docket and see how trademark owners respond to that and whether they take a more aggressive approach when dealing with allegedly parodic uses of trademarks," he said. "Under the Supreme Court's decision, the law appears to be more favourable for trademark owners."
But Ross noted that bringing these types of claims still carries risk because defendants could argue that consumers will "get the joke," with no likelihood for confusion.
Another development to monitor in 2024 is the US Patent and Trademark Office’s (USPTO) adjudication of expungement and reexamination cases pursuant to the Trademark Modernization Act of 2020. Parties can file expungement petitions when marks have never been used in commerce and reexamination petitions when marks haven't been used on or before the application date or the deadline to file the statement of use.
This, Ross noted, is a “relatively new” procedure that lacks a well-developed body of case law as to the legal and evidentiary standards for the USPTO to initiate the proceedings. "So, I think it will be helpful for practitioners to better understand how the USPTO is handling these cases.”
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