Nobody likes a copycat. Guru Denim is no different. Guru Denim Inc., owner of the True Religion brand of jeans, recently filed suit against Burlington Coat Factory Warehouse Corp. for trademark infringement. The suit is over True Religion's trademarked "U-shape" pocket design and claims that Burlington Coat Factory is selling jeans, which bear an infringing "U-shape" design. The allegedly infringing jeans have been supplied by Alpha Garmet Inc. and are sold as "Zanadi" jeans. Guru Denim's lawsuit alleges federal trademark infringement and federal and state dilution, as well as common law trademark infringement and unfair competition.
The complaint contains pictures comparing the True Religion "U-shape" pocket design with Alpha Garment's "Zanadi" pocket design. Any fashionista can recognize True Religion's "U-shape" pocket.
For those of you unfamiliar with the high-end jeans, here's what the pocket looks like up close:
Guru Denim has avidly protected this pocket design. In fact, it owns four U.S. registrations for the design of the pocket. The registrations describe the mark as "a stitching design for a pocket."
The complaint alleges that Burlington Coat Factory's conduct was "extreme, outrageous, fraudulent and was inflicted on True Religion in reckless disregard of True Religion's rights." The lawsuit claims that, "[s]aid conduct was despicable and harmful to True Religion and as such supports an award of exemplary and punitive damages in an amount sufficient to punish and make an example of defendants and to deter them from similar such conduct in the future." This forceful language appears to be in line with Guru Denim's strategy for protecting its valuable "U-shape" pocket design. This marks the third lawsuit that Guru Denim has filed in the past few months alleging infringement of True Religion's "U-shape" design. In July 2014, Guru Denim filed two seperate lawsuits against Rue21, Ross Stores Inc., and YMI Jeans for allegedly manufacturing jeans that also infringe the "U-shape" pocket design.
If you're unfamiliar with the True Religion brand, check out the new "Be So Bold" campaign:
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