Articles by: Christopher J. Passarelli

U.S. Trademark Office Issues Cannabis Registration Guidance

On May 2, 2019 the USPTO released its Examination Guide 1-19, Examination of Marks for Cannabis and Cannabis-Related Goods and Services after Enactment of the 2018 Farm Bill (here: https://www.uspto.gov/sites/default/files/documents/Exam%20Guide%201-19.pdf) , which aims to clarify the procedure for examining marks for cannabis and cannabis-derived goods and for services involving cannabis and cannabis production following the […]

U.S. Trademark Office Issues Cannabis Registration Guidance

On May 2, 2019 the USPTO released its Examination Guide 1-19, Examination of Marks for Cannabis and Cannabis-Related Goods and Services after Enactment of the 2018 Farm Bill (here: https://www.uspto.gov/sites/default/files/documents/Exam%20Guide%201-19.pdf) , which aims to clarify the procedure for examining marks for cannabis and cannabis-derived goods and for services involving cannabis and cannabis production following the […]

ON YOUR MARKS, GET SET…

After months of uncertainty, the California Secretary of State may finally be preparing to open the flood gates for potential applicants seeking to register trademarks and service marks for cannabis, as well as related good and services.  The Secretary of State’s website, http://www.sos.ca.gov/, now includes a portal specific to the cannabis industry: http://www.sos.ca.gov/business-programs/cannabizfile/, which features […]

Bella Union Winery and Union Wine Co. Settle Trademark Dispute

The ongoing litigation between California’s Bella Union Winery, owned by FN Cellars, LLC (owner of Far Niente) and Union Wine Co. of Oregon, over rights in the parties’ respective trademarks (BELLA UNION vs. UNION WINE CO.) has now concluded.  On Wednesday, October 28, 2015, the parties filed a stipulation to dismiss all claims currently before […]

ASCAP (ESCAPE) TO WINE COUNTRY

What should you do when copyright owners come a-knockin’? Wineries throughout Sonoma and Napa Valley have recently received legal notices from copyright owner groups, threatening legal action for unauthorized live and recorded musical performances in their tasting rooms, etc. which feature songs subject to copyright protection. The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) and Broadcast […]

Tacking your New Trademark onto the Old? Supremes: Ask a Jury

Resolving a circuit split, the Supreme Court in Hana Financial, Inc. v. Hana Bank, et al., 574 U. S. ____ (2015) on Wednesday unanimously affirmed a Ninth Circuit decision that the issue of “tacking” – where a trademark user modifies its mark over time while managing to retain its longstanding use and priority position over […]

DP&F Sr. Counsel Chris Passarelli’s Article on the <.Wine> TLD featured in the September Issue of Practical Winery & Vineyard Magazine

We are proud to announce Chris Passarelli’s feature article in the September 2014 issue of Wines &Vines/Practical Winery & Vineyard Magazine, regarding the ongoing controversy centered around the emerging .Wine TLD and its impact on the wine industry and consumers.  A link to the article (on page 58-59) is available here. Chris Passarelli and Scott […]

First Cigarettes, Now Alcohol: Toward “Plain Packaging” For All

Strict packaging regulations in countries outside of the U.S. (particularly Asian countries such as Thailand) for products considered to pose public health risks is nothing new.  We have seen health warnings covering virtually the entire package, and graphic depictions of diseased lungs, kidneys  and other organs adorning alcohol and cigarette packaging in the past. Now […]

Stella Rosa Trumpets Pyrrhic Trade Dress “Victory” Over Constellation

Plaintiff San Antonio Winery, Inc. (“SAW”) filed suit against Constellation Brands last August in the Central District of California, alleging trademark infringement, false designation of origin, and unfair competition due to Constellation’s promotion and sale of fizzy, low-alcohol, sweet (“FLAS”) red wine under the mark ROSATELLO. SAW claims trademark rights in the mark STELLA ROSA […]

Never the Dark Horse, Gallo Goes on Trademark Attack

On February 25, 2014, E. & J. Gallo filed a trademark suit in the Southern District of New York against Dark Horse Distillery, LLC. of Lenexa, Kansas, and T. Edward wines, Ltd., its New York distributor, claiming infringement by false designation of origin, unfair competition and trademark dilution of its registered mark DARK HORSE for […]