Little Trees Even Enjoy Trademark and IP Rights

Los Angeles, Calif. – Companies put a lot of effort and money into their designs, sales and marketing tactics, so it is no wonder the Car-Freshner Corporation is aggravated by a company that is trying to use a similar tree design for its financial benefit. In a lawsuit against Stanislawski Marketing Ventures, who is doing business as Beck & Call promotional products, Car-Freshner alleges that the company “offers, markets, and distributes promotional air fresheners with a tree design that is indistinguishable from and confusingly similar to Car-Freshner’s distinctive Tree Design Marks.”

The case is currently underway in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York, but it has repercussions that are relevant to businesses everywhere. The Car-Freshner Corp. has used the iconic tree symbol on its air freshener for more than 55 years. Numerous TV, movie, and pop culture references have used the tree fresheners and thereby created an even bigger impression on consumers. The lawsuit also lists Julius Sämann, the inventor of the air freshener who “spent five years extracting pine needle oils in the Canadian wilderness before he came up with the shape, name, and fragrance in New York in 1952.”

Car-Freshner Corp. has six registrations for its tree designs in a wide array of goods and services classifications and it further licenses those designs to third parties such as MasterCard, Samsung, Carnival Cruise Lines, and Buffalo Wild Wings. Car-Freshner Corp attests that Beck & Call not only created customizable tree design air fresheners for companies such as DirecTV but that their use of the tree design violates the Lanham Act and other trademark laws. From infringement, unfair competition, trading off the goodwill and reputation of Car-Freshner, and dilution of its unique tree design, Beck & Call has been slammed with it all.

The lawsuit goes to the core of trademark and intellectual property rights a business works hard to maintain, enjoy, and profit from. As such, businesses who secure legal counsel early on during product development stages and further work with their counsel to help them navigate through additional complex business and intellectual property matters often come out ahead of their competition.

In California, Los Angeles intellectual property attorney and Los Angeles business attorney Anthony Spotora provides critical legal guidance to businesses and individuals. From launching a product, analyzing business plans, and registering trademarks and copyrights, the Law Offices of Spotora & Associates is a trusted resource in Southern California and throughout the nation. They represent a wide array of industries as they research, protect, enforce, and defend their clients’ rights.

For more information:

Law Offices of Spotora & Associates, P.C.

1801 Century Park East, 24th Floor

Los Angeles, California 90067-2302

P (310) 556.9641

F (310) 556.9642

Toll Free: (877) 4U-EZ-LEGAL

To learn more, visit

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, August 24th, 2011 at 6:19 pm and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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