Intellectual Property in Store Layouts

Anahida Bhardwaj
Symbiosis Law School, Noida, India

Volume III – Issue II, 2021

Trademark rights are largely used to provide exclusive rights over aspects of goodwill and reputation of the goods or services of the proprietor. Given that brick-and-mortar stores of companies usually have the same layout of all their outlets, a consumer of those goods or services could come to associate the layout with the particular entity. This has been observed numerous times in several jurisdictions, including in India- companies are now applying for this non-conventional trademark to protect their brand entity.

The artistic elements in creating a store layout also have the potential to attract a myriad of IP rights, such as copyright and designs. With this multiple options before an entity, and different judicial precedents providing protection to store layouts under different rights, the novelty of the subject-matter has now created an anomaly in terms of which right to avail.

This research article will elaborate upon the essentials of trademark law, which are satisfied to afford protection to store layouts. The article will further delve into other IP rights, namely copyright and design, and whether the same can also afford protection to the store layouts. Through the means of this article, we will try and establish the most-suitable IP right for protecting store layouts. 

Keywords: Trademark, Non-Conventional, Copyright, Design, Store Layout


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