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Safe distance rule

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U.S. trademark law Edit

The safe distance rule

vests broad discretion in the district court, to ensure that the Lanham Act is not frustrated by manufacturers who seek to circumvent injunctions with subsequent modifications. Accordingly, the 'safe distance' rule permits the court to issue injunctions that sweep even more broadly than the Lanham Act would permit against a manufacturer who has not already been found liable for trademark infringement. [A] competitive business, once convicted of unfair competition in a given particular, should thereafter be required to keep a safe distance away from the margin line — even if that requirement involves a handicap as compared with those who have not disqualified themselves. Having crossed the line of fair competition, a manufacturer may be ordered to stand back from it.[1]

References Edit

  1. Sunbeam Products, Inc. v. West Bend Co., 123 F.3d 246, 260-61, 44 U.S.P.Q.2d (BNA) 1161 (5th Cir. 1997) (citations and internal quote marks omitted) (full-text).

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