Thompson Coburn partner Mike Nepple commented to Bloomberg Law on potential conclusions from recent oral arguments for the pending U.S. Supreme Court case Vidal v. Elster, concerning trademark registration and the First Amendment. Although attorneys generally avoid assumptions about the court’s opinion based on oral arguments, Nepple noted the potential outcome may be easier to read than in many cases.
“After hearing the oral argument, I think it’s a pretty safe assumption that the court is going to rule on behalf of the government,” Nepple said. “The interesting points in the opinion are going to be how narrow or broad it is, and what standard applies.”
He also noted that the justices likely “don’t want to open a can of worms” with unintended First Amendment consequences. “I think the opinion will be very narrow, very tight, and very short,” he said.
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