Thursday, September 18, 2014

Design Patent Maximizing Diamond Refraction Not Invalid for Claiming Functional Design

The court denied plaintiff's motion for summary judgment that defendant's diamond design patent was invalid for depicting a functional design. "Admittedly, [the inventor] sometimes described the design of the [patent] in language that superficially might suggest a functional design. He admitted that his design 'performed the best' and stated that he used a light box to test various arrangements in search of the 'best refraction.' But these statements do not change the fact that the ultimate purpose of the [patented] design is to have a pleasing appearance — a quintessentially ornamental purpose. Simply because an inventor experiments with alternative designs or uses rudimentary tools and tests does not mean the resulting design is functional."

Prestige Jewelry International, Inc. v. Wing Yee Gems & Jewelery Limited, et al, 1-11-cv-02930 (NYSD September 15, 2014, Order) (Preska, J.)

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