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Posts Tagged ‘scams’

To my knowledge, the USPTO and FTC have not yet taken any action against scammers in the US preying on trademark applicants and registrants. See for example:

However,  the UK IPO is not sitting idly. They have taken against against at least two of these outfits to protect consumers and punish the entities for “passing off.” According to a report on gov.uk from August 18, 2014,

“Two of the most blatant offenders – ‘Patent and Trademark Office’ and ‘Patent and Trade Mark Organisation’ – and the persons behind these organisations, Mr Aleksandrs Radcuks and Mr Igors Villers, have admitted and settled our claims and agreed to be bound by an Order of the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court prohibiting them from further acts of passing off.”

Furthermore, the report indicates that the parties were required to make a substantial payment to cover some of IPO’s legal costs.

I sure hope the USPTO takes note of these actions and successes and considers taking steps to stop these scams and to protect US consumers.

For more reporting on this story, see:

 

Leason Ellis continues fight against trademark scammers

Posted by ipelton on: July 29th, 2014

The good folks from the firm of Leason Ellis have continued litigating against select companies that send solicitations to trademark owners.

From the Leason & Ellis website:  

OUR CASE AGAINST PATENT & TRADEMARK AGENCY MOVES FORWARD

Posted on 10 July 2014

In a decision dated July 2, 2014, the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York denied a motion to dismiss our claim for false advertising against Patent & Trademark Agency LLC and Armens Oganesjans. Among other things, our complaint alleges that defendants mail confusing “reminder” notices to trademark owners that appear to be government-issued and falsely state that the owners’ trademarks are about to expire. These notices are actually solicitations, which defendants distribute to mislead trademark owners into using defendants’ services. See http://goo.gl/i68JlT for a copy of the decision.

To read more on this matter, including the Memorandum Decision, see:

Leason Ellis LLP

I received yet another scam related to one of the trademark registrations I own. This one comes from IP Data (www.ip-data.biz).

The solicitation makes little if any sense. They actually appear to disclaim any connection other worthless registry services. They appear to be based in the Czech Republic. A copy of their offering is below.

Their offering costs $2,327. Is it worth a single dollar? Has any trademark attorney, judge, or trademark office consulted their “register” for anything?  I doubt it.

BRNF14744_010259_001

BRNF14744_010260_001

 

I first wrote about these solicitations that offer absolutely no value a year and a half ago. According to the comments on my original blog post (see link below), these solicitations continue to be sent by the “International Catalogue of Trademarks.”

I know of not a single trademark attorney who has ever advised his or her clients to submit their trademark(s) to the “International Catalogue of Trademarks.”  I do not know of a single person or business who has ever read the “International Catalogue of Trademarks.”

Instead of spending your hard earned money on a worthless catalog listing, you could invest it in registration another trademark, perhaps a slogan or logo!

May 15, 2012 blog post: Beware of trademark scam from “International Catalogue of Trademarks”

 

It apears the the UK IPO has recently begun to crackdown on trademark scam services.  Specifically, according to their website (http://www.ipo.gov.uk/warning):

  • “Trading Standards have agreed to act as the Advertising Standards Authority’s (ASA) “legal backstop” in relation to any non-broadcast advertisers who continue to break the rules on misleading advertising.”
  • “Any advertiser that persists in breaking the rules through misleading, aggressive or otherwise unfair non-broadcast advertising can face referral from the ASA to Trading Standards who will consider taking legal action under consumer and business protection laws.”
  • NBC Bird & Pest Solutions Ltd recently complained to the ASA about a renewal invoice from Trademark Renewal Service Ltd. They felt the mailing was misleading as it was not clear it had been sent by a private company with no affiliation to the Intellectual Property Office. We are pleased to say that the ASA Council’s adjudication upheld the complaint. They considered the presentation of the Trademark Renewal Service Ltd mailing was misleading and ruled that it must not appear again in its current form.”

The report from the adjudication against  “Trademark Renewal Service Ltd” can be found here: http://www.asa.org.uk/Rulings/Adjudications/2013/6/Trademark-Renewal-Service-Ltd/SHP_ADJ_220429.aspx. In sum, the group found that “the ad was misleading because it did not make clear that TRS was a private company with no link to the IPO.” As a result, ASA “told Trademark Renewal Service Ltd to amend the layout of its mailing to ensure it did not imply it was official correspondence from a company affiliated with the IPO.”

Hopefully the USPTO and the FTC will follow in the US with similar actions against these questionable and misleading services aimed at trademark owners.