No ‘Hood Love’ for Jay-Z’s Rocawear Brand: Jersey Company Files Copyright Infringement Claim
By Jose Landivar
Editor, Arther Law’s Industry Insider
Jay-Z’s Rocawear brand was sued on Monday by Hood Love, LLC a Jersey-based, for-profit company, which according to its website, is focused on the development of poverty stricken communities. The suit claims that Rocawear is selling merchandise that infringes on its “Hood Love” trademark and accuses Rocawear of misappropriating the Hood Love trademark to promote and sell apparel on its website. The complaint alleges that sales of the infringing apparel could deceive customers into believing that Rocawear is related or affiliated with Hood Love. It names as defendants ROC Apparel Group, LLC, Iconix Brand Group, Inc. and the retailer Dillard’s Inc. among others. Jay-Z is mentioned in the suit, but is not listed as a defendant.
According to reports, the complaint contains a copy of Hood Love’s trademark registration, which was registered in 2010 and covers use of the “Hood Love” phrase on clothing apparel, including T-shirts, baseball caps, and sweatshirts. The lawsuit seeks monetary damages, a share of profits, and a court order to prohibit Roc Apparel, Dillard’s, and the other defendants from continuing sales of the allegedly infringing merchandise.
Rocawear was established in 1999 by Jay Z and Damon Dash, in tandem with the success of Roc-a-Fella Records. However, the company faced some financial hardships as recently as January 2012, when it laid off half of its staff in the menswear division. In June 2013, Rocawear was sued for not paying its bills according to the New York Post.
Photo provided by the Style Cure.