In order to prepare and prosecute utility, design, and plant patent matters in front of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO” or “Office”), the USPTO requires practitioners to demonstrate possession of the legal, scientific, and technical qualifications necessary to render valuable service to clients. See 37 CFR 11.7(a)(2)(ii).
Kim Kardashian has been hit with a lawsuit by New York-based Beauty Concepts LLC over Kardashian’s recently launched skincare line, “SKKN by Kim.” Beauty Concepts filed a complaint in the Eastern District of New York against Kardashian, her business entity Kimsaprincess Inc., and beauty company Coty Inc. on Tuesday, alleging that SKKN by Kim uses branding “highly confusingly similar” to Beauty Concepts’ own skincare line, “SKKN+”. The complaint further alleges that Beauty Concepts has priority of use over the letters “skkn” due to the company’s consistent use of the mark “SKKN+” since at least August 2018.
The Supreme Court recently granted three petitions for certiorari challenging the Federal Circuit’s holding in Arthrex v. Smith & Nephew that administrative patent judges of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) are unconstitutionally appointed. Under the Patent Act, PTAB judges are appointed by the Secretary of Commerce in consultation with the Director of the Patent and Trademark Office (PTO), both of whom are presidentially appointed. In Arthrex—an appeal from an inter parties review challenge to Arthrex’s ‘907 patent—Arthrex argued that PTAB judges are “principal” officers under the Constitution’s Appointments Clause and must be appointed by the President, with the advice and consent of the Senate, rather than “inferior” officers, who can be appointed by heads of departments.