Rihanna’s passing off claim against Topshop

The Court of Appeal has upheld the High Court decision that Topshop’s sale of t-shirts bearing a photograph of well-known pop-star Rihanna, without her approval, amounted to passing off.

The Court of Appeal’s judgement shows that it is possible for a celebrity to bring a passing off action to prevent the unauthorised use of their image.

However, the outcome of this case was very much dependent on its facts.**

The court confirmed that the use of an image of a person on a garment was not, of itself, passing off and that under English law a celebrity does not have a right to control the use of their image generally.

**If you need more information in connection with your own business please contact IPR specialist lawyer, Karen Mason

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