Designer Does Not Own Van Cleef Creations, Court Rules

Van Cleef & Arpels has won an intellectual property case in a Paris court against a former employee who claimed he owned the designs he created, according to reports in the Financial Times and Women’s Wear Daily.

Thierry Berthelot, a designer for the jewelry house for 15 years, argued that creating the designs gave him ownership of them, the newspapers say. But the appeal court ruled that the designs were the result of a “collective” effort.

“The ruling says that the rights belong to the fashion house,” Susan Scafidi, professor of law at Fordham University School, told WWD, adding that it is “a clarification of what was a gray area.”

The designer reportedly plans to appeal.