U.S. Patent Office Cancels Redskins Trademark R..
The landmark case, which appeared before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board, was filed on behalf of five Native Americans. It was the second time such a case was filed.
his victory was a long time coming and reflects the hard work of many attorneys at our firm, said lead attorney Jesse Witten, of Drinker Biddle & Reath.
Federal trademark law does not permit registration of trademarks that ay disparage individuals or groups or ring them into contempt or disrepute. The ruling pertains to six different trademarks associated with the team, each containing the word 珐edskin. /p>
凡e are extraordinarily gratified to have prevailed in this case, Alfred Putnam Jr., the chairman of Drinker Biddle & Reath, said. he dedication and professionalism of our attorneys and the determination of our clients have resulted in a milestone victory that will serve as an historic precedent. /p>
The ruling does not mean that the Redskins have to change the name of the team. It does affect whether the team and the NFL can make money from merchandising because it limits the team legal options when others use the logos and the name on T shirts, sweatshirts, beer glasses and license plate holders.
In addition, Native Americans have won at this stage before, in 1999. But the team and the NFL won an appeal to U.S. District Court in 2009. The court did not rule on the merits of the case, however, but threw it out, saying that the plaintiffs didn have standing to file it. The team is likely to make the same appeal this time. Team officials are expected to make a statement this morning.