The Patent & Trademark Committee Presents Scandalous, Immoral and Disparaging Intellectual Property Under Lanham Act Section 2(a)

March 2, 2016 | Washington, DC


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The en banc Federal Circuit recently held in In re Tam that the Lanham Act Section 2(a) provision that prohibits the PTO from registering trademarks that “may disparage” persons, institutions or beliefs is unconstitutional and violates the First Amendment on its face. A co-pending appeal, In re Brunetti, challenged the constitutionality of Section 2(a) provisions barring immoral and scandalous trademarks.

Christina Hieber of the USPTO will set forth the substantive background and related legal precedent regarding Section 2(a). Professor Christine Farley and amici in In re Tam, including the ACLU and the National Asian Pacific Bar Association, will share their perspectives on the recent decisions in In re Tam and In re Brunetti. The panel will address likely implications these decisions will have with respect to intellectual property practice and enforcement, and with respect to the highly publicized Washington Redskins appeal in the Fourth Circuit.

WilmerHale Counsel Omar Khan will serve as moderator.

To register, please contact Thomas Dawson at or +1 202 780 0970. Those wishing to participate via the Internet, please register at