19 September 2017

Steve Madden accused of design patent infringement

Fashion company  Steve Madden has been accused of copying patented designs on a range of sandals, “rather than undertaking its own independent development”.

The JPT Group, which owns the ‘ Bernando’ shoe brand, filed its complaint at the US District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division, on Friday, September 15.

Steve Madden was accused of infringing US design patent numbers D581,149 and D577,182 through the sale of its  ‘Pamela’ line.

The shoe consists of a strap which goes in between the big toe and second, with pearls attached to the material.

JPT claimed that this infringed the patents it owns for use on its ‘Mojo’ sandals, which feature a similar design with a silver studded strap.

According to the complaint, JPT has “complied with the statutory requirement of placing a notice of the JPT patents on its Mojo sandals”.

JPT also accused Steve Madden of “wilful infringement”, claiming that the fashion brand knew about the allegedly infringed patents.

The complaint went on to reference litigation from November 2015, where Steve Madden was again sued by JPT for design patent infringement in relation to its ‘Virrtue Thong’ range of sandals.

The case was dismissed with prejudice in February 2017.

Steve Madden is no stranger to IP infringement lawsuits—in June, the fashion company was  sued by Valentino over purses and strap designs.

According to the claim, Steve Madden copied Valentino’s ‘Double purse’ design and a ‘Camubutterfly strap design’, which is a bag strap that looks like a guitar strap with a butterfly design.

Steve Madden was also accused of trade dress infringement by AirWair, a subsidiary of footwear brand  Dr Martens.

According to the claim, the copying had been a “systematic and deliberate” attempt to trade on the “popularity and distinctive appearance and design” of Dr Martens’ footwear.

Did you enjoy reading this story?  Sign up to our free daily newsletters and get stories like this sent straight to your inbox

Today’ top stories:

Carrie Underwood tangled up in copyright claim

Waymo seeks to postpone Uber trial date

Battle of the law firms: Fish IP v Fish & Richardson

Already registered?

Login to your account

To request a FREE 2-week trial subscription, please signup.
NOTE - this can take up to 48hrs to be approved.

Two Weeks Free Trial

For multi-user price options, or to check if your company has an existing subscription that we can add you to for FREE, please email Adrian Tapping at

More on this story

6 June 2017   Steve Madden, a fashion company, has landed itself in hot water with rival Valentino over purses and strap designs.
1 March 2017   AirWair, a subsidiary of footwear brand Dr Martens, has kicked out at a rival in a trade dress infringement lawsuit, filed yesterday.
22 August 2018   Fashion brand Steve Madden has filed a strongly-worded lawsuit against competitor Yves Saint Laurent in a pre-emptive strike against the French company.