By Karen Freifeld
NEW YORK, June 16 (Reuters) - J.C. Penney interfered with Macy's agreement with Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia , a New York judge ruled on Monday.
Justice Jeffrey Oing of New York state court referred the issue of damages to a referee or special hearing officer.
But, he said in his written ruling, "Macy's failed to prove by 'clear, unequivocal and convincing evidence' that it is entitled to a punitive damage award."
Macy's sued Penney and Martha Stewart Living after the two announced a partnership in December 2011. Macy's said the agreement breached its contract with Martha Stewart that included exclusive rights to Martha Stewart-branded cookware, bedding and bath products.
In October, Penney and Martha Stewart Living announced a revised agreement that eliminated Stewart's products in home goods categories to which Macy's claimed exclusive rights.
(Reporting By Karen Freifeld)