Victory for Avery Dennison, Inc.

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November 2012

On November 9, 2012, Judge Feinerman of the Northern District of Illinois granted a Motion for Summary Judgment to defendant Avery Dennison, Inc. against Continental Datalabel, Inc., ending the false advertising and tortious interference claims against Avery Dennison, Inc.  Avery was represented by Irell & Manella LLP in Los Angeles and Kaye Scholer LLP in Chicago.

Continental sued Avery, alleging that the company’s packaging claims “Only Avery label sheets bend to expose the Pop-Up EdgeTM ” and “Only Avery offers the Pop-Up EdgeTM for fast peeling” were false.  Insofar as the Pop-Up Edge is an Avery trademark, the court found the “Only Avery” statements were not false.  Moreover, in its 24-page Opinion and Order, the court found Continental had no evidence that the statements caused actual consumer confusion. Continental also claimed that Avery tortiously interfered with its business expectations with two customers based on alleged statements made pertaining to a pending patent application.  The court found no evidence to support this claim.  The court further found that “any state law imposing liability for warning of potential patent litigation, without more, would be preempted by federal patent law…," noting “a rule prohibiting a prospective patentee from telling interested firms what it intends to do with the patent if granted would make no sense.” 

Jane Shay Wald of Irell & Manella, co-lead counsel with Rob Unikel of Kaye Scholer, described Judge Feinerman’s Opinion and Order as “a significant ruling for our client and an excellent statement of the law.” In addition to Unikel, the Kay Scholer counsel representing Avery Dennison include Deanna Keysor and Michelle Marek.