Burberry sues Target for trademark infringement over use of its check pattern

May 10, 2018

Target is the latest retailer to find itself in the crosshairs of Burberry over its use of a certain kind of plaid.

Burberry, the British fashion house, has sued everyone from J.C. Penney to T.J. Maxx for trademark infringement for use of its signature check pattern. Last week, it filed a federal lawsuit in New York against Target Corp. alleging the same.

This action arises fom Targets repeated, willful, and egregious misappropriation of Burberrys famous and iconic luxury check trademarks, the lawsuit says.

Target said it is aware of the filing and hopes to address the lawsuit in a reasonable manner.

At Target, we have great respect for design rights, the Minneapolis-based retailer said.

Burberry says in the suit that it became aware in December 2017 of scarves Target was selling that were very similar to its own.

Although Targets copycat scarves are of inferior quality, they are superficially indistinguishable from genuine Burberry scarves. the suit says.

Burberry said it had previously sent a cease and desist letter to Target earlier in 2017 about the use of its check pattern used on eyewear, luggage, and water bottles.

Burberrys check pattern, which dates back to the 1920s, is a registered trademark in its distinctive red, camel, black and white patttern as well as without any color designations, the suit says.

Targets well-publicized history of collaborating with popular brands and fashion designers to promote and sell Target-exclusive limited edition collection futher heightens the risk of such confusion, the suit says.

Burberry settled its case with J.C. Penney out of court in 2016. It did the same with TJX, the parent company of T.J. Maxx and Marshalls, in 2010.

Kavita Kumar 612-673-4113