Two recent Northern District of California cases have applied the new Winter preliminary injunction standard in the trademark context.
Before 2008, the plaintiff in a trademark infringement case was entitled to a presumption of irreparable harm upon a showing of likelihood of success on the merits. But in Winter v. NRDC, Inc. 129 S. Ct. 365, 374 (2008), a non-trademark case, the Supreme Court held that the 9th Circuit’s standard of the likelihood of irreparable injury in granting preliminary injunctions was too lenient and held that plaintiff must demonstrate that irreparable injury is “likely in the absence of an injunction.”
In CytoSport, Inc. v. Vital Pharmaseuticals, Inc. 2009 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 38343, the court held that because trademarks serve as the identity of their owners and in them resides the reputation and goodwill of their owners, if another person infringes the marks, the owner loses quality control thus creating th epotitntial for damages to its reputation.