Managing Partner Jim Fedalen authored the article, “Exclusion orders in trademark cases,” in Intellectual Property magazine discussing the use of the United States International Trade Commission (ITC) to enforce alleged trademark infringement cases. Filing a case in the ITC allows a complainant to name multiple respondents – even foreign ones – in a single action without worrying about personal jurisdiction issues. The ITC can issue either a limited or general exclusion order, which directs the U.S. Customs and Border Protection to exclude articles from entry into the U.S. A general exclusion order bars importation of infringing articles by anyone, even if they were not a party in the ITC’s investigation.
As more companies turn to the ITC to remedy alleged trademark infringement, more companies may be faced with opposing the request for exclusion orders which are enforced by Customs. If faced with an exclusion order, it is important for a person to move fast to protect their rights especially if they were not a party to the investigation.