The Murphy Door Bed Co., Inc. v. Interior Sleep Systems, Inc.
United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
874 F.2d 95 (1989)
In the early 1900s, William Lawrence Murphy invented a bed that folded up into a wall when not in use. Murphy started the Murphy Door Bed Co., Inc. (MDBC) (plaintiff) and began selling and marketing his invention as the “Murphy bed.” In 1981 and 1982, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) denied MDBC’s applications to register “Murphy bed” as a trademark. The PTO found that the name had become generic as the public had long used the term Murphy bed as a synonym for any bed that folds up into a wall. The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board affirmed. Interior Sleep Systems, Inc. (ISS) (defendant) began using the term Murphy bed in the marketing of its own foldaway bed. MDBC brought suit for common law trademark infringement. The district court ruled in favor MDBC, finding that the term Murphy bed had acquired a secondary meaning in the market. ISS appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Miner, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 724,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Berkeley, and Northwestern—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students.Unlock this case briefRead our student testimonials
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students.Learn about our approachRead more about Quimbee
Here's why 724,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 45,600 briefs, keyed to 983 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.