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Clothing maker sues over 'Calvin' trademark

Posted on Mon, Dec. 20, 2004

HARRISBURG, Pa. - A Scranton clothing manufacturer is suing apparel giant Calvin Klein Inc., accusing its parent company of "a frontal assault" over a trademark that threatens to run the Calvin Clothing Co. Inc. out of business.

The federal trademark-infringement lawsuit, filed Friday in federal court in Scranton, seeks a court order to prevent Calvin Klein and Phillips-Van Heusen Corp. from using the mark "Calvin" and to make them destroy any stock bearing that label.

The lawsuit claims Calvin Clothing, named in 1935 for the owner's young son, did not oppose Calvin Klein's use of the name in marketing as long as it was never shortened to simply "Calvin."

"Over the years there is ample evidence of the two companies' 'understanding' of this tacit agreement, and it was in the interest of both companies to maintain this status quo," according to the complaint.

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