Third Circuit confirms that consumers still lack Lanham Act standing

Knit With v. Knitting Fever, Inc., — Fed.Appx. —-, 2015
WL 5147749, No. 12–3219 (Sept. 2, 2015)
This long-running, contentious litigation comes to an end
(perhaps) with the court of appeals’ affirmance of the district court’s
rejection of various claims, including Lanham Act false advertising
claims.  At the time, the district court
applied Conte Bros. to the standing
issue, whereas the court of appeals needed to apply Lexmark.  Nonetheless, the
rejection under Conte Bros. was still
appropriate because the plaintiff didn’t come within the zone of interests
addressed by the Lanham Act.  As Lexmark said:
A consumer who is hoodwinked into
purchasing a disappointing product may well have an injury-in-fact cognizable
under Article III, but he cannot invoke the protection of the Lanham Act—a
conclusion reached by every Circuit to consider the question. Even a business
misled by a supplier into purchasing an inferior product is, like consumers
generally, not under the Act’s aegis.
Plaintiff, “a yarn retailer who alleges to have been misled
by its supplier into purchasing mislabeled yarn, is not within the zone of
interests protected by the Lanham Act” and thus lacked Lanham Act standing.

from Blogger

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