The Lanham Act was made law in 1946 by Congress on the permissions provided by the Commerce Clause. It offers a nationwide trademark registration system that gives protection to trademark owners who have registered to make similar use of their trademark illegal. This applies in cases in which such use could confuse consumers. It also applies if such use erodes the competitiveness or appeal of a popular company mark.
The extent to which the Lanham Act is independent can depend on state law. Besides providing a system for trademark registration, the act also provides criteria under which companies can watch the modifications they make to their trademarks. Through these aspects, the Lanham Act oversees unfair competition laws and regulations. It also controls false advertising. Business owners have a legal right against competitors who make misleading claims about their products and business operations. Also addressed in the act are issues of privacy invasion such as the disclosure of financial information to third parties.
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