Supreme Court grants Trunki right to appeal in copycat case

Latest development in design infringement dispute between Magmatic and PMS International.
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Rob Law and his Trunkis.jpg

The Supreme Court of the United Kingdom has granted Magmatic permission to appeal the Court of Appeal order of April 10th 2014.

It’s the latest development in a high profile design infringement dispute between Magmatic, the British company behind the Trunki ride-on suitcase, and PMS International Ltd, a Hong Kong-based manufacturer.

The Supreme Court hearing is anticipated to take place in 2015.

In July 2013, Magmatic successfully sued PMS in the High Court for infringing Trunki’s design with an imported lookalike case. However, the Court of Appeal reversed this decision in March 2014.

The Court of Appeal ruling meant CAD (computer-aided design) drawings would no longer be offered the same protection as line-drawings – which meant third parties would be able to claim differences in surface decoration could be taken in to account when comparing a registered design with that of a copycat.

Trunki was registered through CAD, as are the majority of British designs. Trunki founder Rob Law argued the ruling would leave more than 350,000 creative British businesses wide open to copyright infringement.

In May 2014, Rob Law launched a #ProtectYourDesign campaign on behalf of responsible British businesses calling for the Supreme Court to re-examine this case and grant designers the robust protection offered elsewhere.

The campaign was supported in an open letter to Government published in The Daily Telegraph by Sir Terence Conran, Kevin McCloud, Will Butler-Adams and a host of leading business figures and trade bodies, including Anti Copying In Design [ACID] and The Design Trust.

Rob Law, founder of Trunki, commented: "We are very pleased that the Supreme Court Justices have granted us permission to appeal. It’s the perfect early Christmas present. 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."

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