NEW YORK – A New York State Supreme Court judge has ordered Macy’s, J.C. Penney and Martha Stewart Living into mediation in a bid to resolve a dispute over a partnership with the Martha Stewart brand.

The companies were wrapping up the third week of a trial over whether Macy’s has the exclusive rights to sell some Martha Stewart-branded merchandise.

Cincinnati-based Macy’s Inc. sued New York-based Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc. for allegedly breaching their contract when it signed a deal with J.C. Penney Co. in December 2011. In a separate lawsuit, Macy’s sued Penney.

Penney said Thursday it won’t sell any Martha Stewart products deemed exclusive by Macy’s before April 8, when hearings are scheduled to resume.