Major League Baseball Properties’ case against Upper Deck over trademark issues will be heard just after the 2010 baseball season begins.
Major League Baseball Properties will get its day in court over what it claims are trademark issues involved in 2010 Upper Deck baseball cards.
A combined preliminary injunction hearing and trial has been scheduled for April 19 according to MLB Properties’ spokesman Matt Bourne. A statement released to Sports Collectors Daily on Thursday indicated MLB was "pleased" that a federal judge has expedited the case.
"This signals that the Judge has taken our concerns about Upper Deck’s distribution of unauthorized cards very seriously," Bourne stated.
Last year, Upper Deck lost its MLB trading card license after 20 seasons when baseball opted to give Topps an exclusive right to use league and team logos and other trademarks beginning in 2010. Upper Deck does retain a license through the MLB Players Association, which allows it to print cards featuring names and images of players.
MLB Properties filed suit against its former business partner in a New York federal court last week after seeing Upper Deck’s new cards, many of which clearly show cap logos and portions of other uniform designs.
Upper Deck apparently believes it is not violating the law, although the company has not commented on the case.
"We are determined to put an end to Upper Deck’s unlawful use of our intellectual property which is causing confusion among consumers," Bourne stated.
"It is unfortunate that Upper Deck refused to give anyone involved the customary opportunity to review their product before distribution, because this situation could have been avoided altogether. We remain confident that the Court will rule in our favor and protect our rights and those of our Clubs.”
2010 Topps and Upper Deck on eBay