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Intellectual Property Litigation Trademarks

Reckless Disregard for the Truth of a Material Statement Made to the USPTO Is Sufficient for Proving the Intent to Deceive

The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) has finally filled a gap left by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in the standard for finding deceptive intent when trying to prove fraud on the USPTO.

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The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) has finally filled a gap left by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in the standard for finding deceptive intent when trying to prove fraud on the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO). In Chutter, Inc. v. Great Management Group, LLC and Chutter, Inc. v. Great Concepts, LLC, 2021 USPQ2d 1001 (TTAB 2021), the TTAB held, in a precedential opinion, that a reckless disregard of the truth or falsity of a material statement made to the USPTO satisfies the deceptive intent requirement for finding fraud. The TTAB applied this holding in a cancellation proceeding to invalidate U.S. Trademark Registration No. 2,929,764 because: 1) the registrant’s attorney failed to disclose proceedings against the registration pending at the time the registrant filed its Section 15 Declaration to make the registration incontestable; and 2) the registrant’s knowing failure to take any remedial action after being informed of the error suggests that the failure to disclose was intentional and, thus, satisfied the deceptive intent requirement to prove fraud.

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