On June 15, 2016, two representatives from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection office and a special agent from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security gave a 60 minute in-depth presentation to Be Original Americas board members in Chicago, during NeoCon.
Highlights from the presentation include:
- Designs may be legally protected through U.S. federally registered trademarks, copyrights, and/or patents.
- Trademarks and copyrights registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office or U.S. Copyright Office can be recorded with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to maximize their protection at the border.
- CBP is authorized to detain and/or seize imported merchandise that infringes recorded rights.
- Recordation is effective for the term of registration or remaining period up to ten years. Right holders may electronically file IPR recordation applications at iprr.cbp.gov.
Since the meeting, U.S. Customs has been in contact with many Be Original Americas members. This August, U.S. Customs officers in the New York metro area will meet with 7 member companies to learn more about their original designs and help stem the stream of counterfeit furnishings into the United States.
"This marks an important step in Be Original Americas' short history. Meeting with U.S. Customs and Border Protection recognizes the strength of our organization and gives our members the tools for legally protecting their authentic designs and brand integrity," said Sam Grawe, President of Be Original Americas and Global Brand Director for Herman Miller. "We encourage our members to register their trademarks and copyrights so that their designs can be protected."