Intellectual Property/Branding

canada cannabis patent

Currently, seven of Canada’s top ten cannabis patent holders are major multi-national pharmaceutical companies, according to a joint research project by Washington D.C.-based New Frontier Data and London-based cannabis bio-technology firm, Grow Biotech. The list includes Ciba-Geigy AG (Switzerland) with 21 patents; Pfizer Products (United States) with 14; and Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson (Sweden) with 13.

cannabis patent litigationWe have been closely monitoring the first ever cannabis patent infringement case, between plaintiff United Cannabis Corporation (“UCANN”) and defendant Pure Hemp Collective, Inc. (“Pure Hemp”). UCANN owns the “911 Patent,” which generally covers liquid cannabinol formulations of a purified CBD and/or THC greater than 95%. For the past year, UCANN has fought to secure

cannabis trademark scandalous immoralIn alignment with its 2017 decision in the Matal v. Tam case which ruled that the disparagement clause of the Lanham Act violated the First Amendment’s free speech clause, the Supreme Court ruled last week that free speech protections also extend to “immoral or scandalous” trademarks. In Iancu v. Brunetti, SCOTUS ruled that the

cannabis trade secret intellectual propertyCannabis businesses use non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) constantly. This may be due to a combination of factors: 1) the relative hardship of acquiring and protecting intellectual property over marijuana-related processes and products, today and historically; 2) a general modus operandi of “close to the vest” dealings in an industry that historically was pushed underground; and 3)

Last week I attended the International Trademark Association’s Annual Meeting, where one of the somewhat obscure topics discussed is something I’ve actually seen crop up recently in practice. The question is at what point the use of a fictional character in branding or advertising constitutes either trademark or copyright infringement. And the answer is not

CBD trademark cannabisEarlier this month, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) issued Examination Guide 1-19: Examination of Marks for Cannabis and Cannabis-Related Goods and Services After Enactment of the 2018 Farm Bill. While the guide didn’t provide any earth-shattering news regarding cannabis-related trademarks, it did clarify the USPTO’s position with respect to trademarks for