January 30, 2015

New twist in design case

The Supreme Court of the United Kingdom has granted the Bristol-based firm Magmatic permission to appeal against a Court of Appeal order, made in April last year.

It’s the latest twist in the long running legal battle between Magmatic, which produces children’s travel accessories, and PMS International Ltd, a manufacturer with headquarters in Hong Kong.

In July 2013, Magmatic successfully sued PMS, after claiming the company had infringed intellectual property laws with the design of one of its ride-on suitcases. Royds commented on the original High Court decision here.

However, nine months on the Court of Appeal overturned the original ruling, deciding that the rival product was different enough not to fall foul of copyright legislation.

It was a bitter blow for entrepreneur Rob Law, who has previously pitched his ideas on TV’s Dragons’ Den. He said that the ruling could expose more than 350,000 creative businesses in Britain to the threat of intellectual property infringement.

Determined not to give up, Mr Law launched the #ProtectYourDesign campaign, urging the Supreme Court to re-examine the case.

An open letter was published in the Daily Telegraph, with a number of influential business leaders and trade bodies, including The Design Trust, endorsing the campaign – which this month proved successful.

“We are very pleased that the Supreme Court Justices have granted us permission to appeal,” said Mr Law.

“The decision recognises that there’s an unarguable case to answer. But it also confirms, as we and our supporters have always maintained, that the issue of design protection is of significant public importance.”

At Royds, our experts can provide comprehensive advice on all aspects of intellectual property law, including the latest changes introduced under the Intellectual Property Act. For more information please visit our website or contact Stephen Welfare or John North.

Share on:

Your Comments

Leave a comment

Thank you for choosing to leave a comment. Please keep in mind that comments are moderated. Please do not use a spammy keyword or a domain as your name or it will be deleted.