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Australian Therapeutic Supplies Pty., Ltd. v. Naked TM, LLC

The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board determined that Australian Therapeutic Supplies Pty. Ltd. (“Australian”) lacks standing to petition for cancellation of a trademark registration. The Board reasoned that Australian could not show an interest in the cancellation proceeding or a reasonable belief of damage because it had contracted away its proprietary rights in its unregistered marks. We disagree. An absence of proprietary rights does not in itself negate an interest in the proceeding or a reasonable belief of damage. We hold that a petitioner seeking to cancel a trademark registration establishes an entitlement to bring a cancellation proceeding under 15 U.S.C. § 1064 by demonstrating a real interest in the cancellation proceeding and a reasonable belief of damage regardless of whether petitioner lacks a proprietary interest in an asserted unregistered mark. Because Australian has a real interest in the cancellation proceeding and a reasonable belief of damage, Australian satisfies the statutory requirements to seek cancellation of a registered trademark pursuant to § 1064. We reverse and remand.

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