by Dale C. Campbell

 

Section 43(a) the Lanham Act provides for liability related to unregistered marks. Section 43(a) provides for civil liability for any person who, IN connection with any goods or service uses in commerce any word, term, name, symbol or any combination thereof, or any false designation origin, false or misleading description of fact or false or misleading misrepresentation of which (a) is likely to cause confusion as to the origin, sponsorship or approval of the goods or services by another person or (b) in commercial advertising or promotion misrepresents the nature, character qualities or origin of his or her good, service or commercial activity. Subsection (a) is commonly known as the false origin claim and subsection (b) is commonly known as false advertising claim. In short, one can’t be liable for claims of false origin even if the statements are not made in the course of commercial advertising or promotion as required in subsection (b).

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