When the target market for a product is sophisticated, the chances of consumer misleading are low

June 17, 2019
The legal update was published in Afik News 286 03.07.2019

ע"א 8191/16 דיאליט בע"מ נ' אברהם הרר, 17.06.2019, בית המשפט העליון, כבוד המשנה לנשיאה חנן מלצר, כבוד השופט נועם סולברג וכבוד השופט דוד מינץ

A manufacturer of machines contended that a competitor copied and reproduced the machines developed and produced by it.
The Supreme Court rejected the claim. Design infringement occurs when a person, who does not hold the right, manufactures and sells a product that comprises the design or imitates it. Passing off occurs when there is concern of misleading the public regarding a product with goodwill. Here there are evident external differences between the machines, such as in color and structure. Additionally, the machines’ customer base consists of skilled professionals who can easily distinguish between the original and the other machine and thus there is no reasonable concern of misleading the public.