NY Appeals Court finds Louboutin’s Red Heels Merit Protection in the U.S.

The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has unanimously held that Christian Louboutin had a valid and enforceable trademark for the use of red shoe soles, but only when the rest of the shoe is in a contrasting color.  The three-judge panel found that Louboutin’s heels have “the requisite ‘distinctiveness’ to merit protection”.  This decision overturns the previous decision of the U.S. District Court for New York which held that the colour red as used by Louboutin was aesthetically functional, and therefore not entitled to trade-mark protection.   The Court of Appeals ruling allows room for Yves Saint Laurent to continue selling its monochrome red shoe given that the sole and upper are both red.  See also: https://www.clancybrionraffoul.com/2012/news/should-colour-be-accorded-trade-mark-protection-in-the-fashion-industry-louboutins-lacquered-red-sole-trade-mark-in-jeopardy-in-u-s/

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