Indiana Copyright Litigation Update – Transcultural C.A.R.E. Associates v. Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation

Plaintiff is the owner of the copyright in a model of cultural competency titled “Cultural Competency in Healthcare Delivery: Have I ‘ASKED’ Myself the Right Questions?”. Defendants, teachers for Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation, allegedly used a portion of Plaintiff’s model without permission in a PowerPoint presentation entitled “Culturally Competent Classroom Management” (see Exhibit C below).

The PowerPoint presentation was apparently part of New Teacher Orientation materials. While the Complaint doesn’t elaborate, it’s quite possible the Defendants’ use will qualify for a “fair use” exemption from copyright infringement. Copyright Act Section 107 specifically exempts uses of copyrighted works for, among other things, teaching and scholarship. Defendants’ Answer and/or Motion to Dismiss should provide more detailed information about their use of the Plaintiff’s copyrighted work. Stay tuned for updates.

Josepha Campinha-Bacote d/b/a Transcultural C.A.R.E. Associates v. Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation et al

Court Case Number: 3:14-cv-00056-RLY-WGH
File Date: Friday, April 18, 2014
Plaintiff: Josepha Campinha-Bacote d/b/a Transcultural C.A.R.E. Associates
Plaintiff Counsel: Avonte D. Campinha-Bacote of Campinha-Bacote LLP
Defendant: Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation, Dionne Blue, Deborah Hartz
Cause: Copyright Infringement
Court: Southern District of Indiana
Judge: Judge Richard L. Young
Referred To: Magistrate Judge William G. Hussmann, Jr.

Complaint:

Exhibit C:

Indiana Trademark Litigation Update – Roche Diagnostics GmbH v. Polymer Technology Systems

Plaintiff, based in Indianapolis, Indiana, has used the ACCU-CHEK trademark in connection with medical instruments and apparatus related to blood-glucose monitoring and diabetes management and education since as early as 1981. In March 2014, Defendant changed its company name to CHEK Diagnostics and began to promote a line of diabetes care products. Plaintiff maintains that the CHEK mark is confusingly similar to its ACCU-CHEK trademarks.

Roche Diagnostics GmbH et al v. Polymer Technology Systems Inc.

Court Case Number: 1:14-cv-00552-JMS-DKL
File Date: Thursday, April 10, 2014
Plaintiff: Roche Diagnostics GmbH, Roche Diagnostics Operations Inc.
Plaintiff Counsel: Jonathan P. Froemel, John R. Maley of Barnes & Thornburg LLP
Defendant: Polymer Technology Systems Inc.
Cause: Trademark Infringement, Unfair Competition, Common Law Trademark Infringement, Common Law Unfair Competition, Declaratory Judgment
Court: Southern District of Indiana
Judge: Judge Jane Magnus-Stinson
Referred To: Magistrate Judge Denise K. LaRue

Indiana Copyright Litigation Update – Richard N. Bell v. Diversified Vehicle Services et al

INDY SKYLINEThe Plaintiff in this copyright lawsuit is an attorney and professional photographer living in McCordsville, Indiana. In 2000, Plaintiff took two photographs of the downtown Indianapolis skyline from a location on the Canal near the USS Indianapolis Memorial. Both of Plaintiff’s photographs were duly registered with the U.S. Copyright Office and posted on the Internet in August 2000. All of the various defendants have allegedly utilized Plaintiff’s photographs on their respective websites without permission.

Website owners, you should immediately check your websites to determine whether you know the source of EVERY photograph. Unless you’re certain that you have permission to use the photographs (or qualify for some exception to copyright infringement like fair use), remove/replace the photographs at once. These photograph copyright lawsuits have been occurring for far too long to continue to plead ignorance or innocent infringement. Take your own photographs, hire a photographer or license existing photographs. But don’t get caught in a lawsuit because you take the easy way out and grab an image from Google.

Whatever you do, definitely don’t use Plaintiff’s photographs…he has a long history of litigation to enforce his copyrights:

Richard N. Bell v. Mark Arruda

Bell v. Indy Cleaning Pros

Richard N. Bell v. Greg Bayers LLC et al.

Richard N. Bell v. Jerry Gordon et al.

Richard Bell v. Cameron Taylor et al.

Richard N. Bell v. Diversified Vehicle Services et al

Court Case Number: 1:14-cv-00525
File Date: Monday, April 07, 2014
Plaintiff: Richard N. Bell
Plaintiff Counsel: Richard N. Bell – Pro Se
Defendant: Diversified Vehicle Services, Cameron Taylor, Taylor Computer Solutions, Rhonda Williams, Forensic Solutions Inc., Heath Garrett, Crestacom Inc., American Traveler Service Corp. LLC, Mike Cowper, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Easystreet Realty Indianapolis, Drohan Management, Metal Markets, Mattison Corporation, Industrial Heating Equipment Association, Junk Dawgs, Kimberly Hinds
Cause: Copyright Infringement, Unfair Competition, Theft
Court: Southern District of Indiana
Judge: Judge Sarah Evans Barker
Referred To: Magistrate Judge Denise K. LaRue

Indiana Trademark Litigation Update – Order Inn v. Ton Ganser et al

Since as early as 2000, Plaintiff has used its registered ORDER INN trademark in connection with “On-line ordering services in the field of restaurant takeout and delivery.” Defendant has begun providing similar services at the http://www.order-in.biz domain. Plaintiff seeks an injunction and damages as a result of the allegedly infringing activity.

Order Inn Screenshot

Order Inn, Inc. v. Ton Ganser et al

Court Case Number: 1:14-cv-00517-TWP-DKL
File Date: Friday, April 04, 2014
Plaintiff: Order Inn, Inc.
Plaintiff Counsel: Ryan Gile of Weide & Miller Ltd.
Defendant: Ton Ganser, TJ Enterprises of Indiana LLC, Does 1-10
Cause: Federal Trademark Infringement, False Designation of Origin, Unfair Competition
Court: Southern District of Indiana
Judge: Judge Tanya Walton Pratt
Referred To: Magistrate Judge Denise K. LaRue

Indiana Trademark Litigation Update – Noble Roman’s v. Sahara Sam’s Indoor Water Park

Noble Roman’s Inc. v. Sahara Sam’s Indoor Water Park, LLC

Court Case Number: 1:14-cv-00500-SEB-MJD
File Date: Tuesday, April 01, 2014
Plaintiff: Noble Roman’s Inc.
Plaintiff Counsel: Steven K. Huffer of S.K. Huffer & Associates PC
Defendant: Sahara Sam’s Indoor Water Park, LLC
Cause: Trademark Infringement, Breach of Contract, Fraud, Injunctive Relief
Court: Southern District of Indiana
Judge: Judge Sarah Evans Barker
Referred To: Magistrate Judge Mark J. Dinsmore

 

Wounded Warrior lawsuit against Indiana Veteran transferred to Northern District

This case transferred in to the Northern District of Indiana from the Southern District based on venue considerations.

Court Case Number: 1:14-cv-00075-PPS-CAN
File Date: Thursday, March 13, 2014
Plaintiff: Wounded Warrior Project Inc.
Plaintiff Counsel: John P. Passarelli, Maggie L. Cox, Matthew S. Noren of Kutak Rock LLP, Jessica M. Lindemann of Barnes & Thornburg LLP
Defendant: Help Indiana Vets Inc., Dean M. Graham
Cause: Trademark Infringement
Court: Northern District of Indiana
Judge: Chief Judge Philip P. Simon
Referred To: Magistrate Judge Christopher A. Nuechterlein
Notes: Case transferred in from Southern District of Indiana; Case Number 1:13-cv-01857

Indiana Copyright Litigation Update – Union Hospital v. Attachmate Corporation

Plaintiff has been licensing software from Defendant for about 16 years. In response to claims by Defendant that Plaintiff has exceeded the terms of the license (and a corresponding demand for $2 million in compensatory fees/damages), Plaintiff brings this action for declaratory judgment of non-infringement.

Union Hospital, Inc. v. Attachmate Corporation

Court Case Number: 2:14-cv-00045-JMS-WGH
File Date: Wednesday, February 19, 2014
Plaintiff: Union Hospital, Inc.
Plaintiff Counsel: Stephen E. Reynolds, Michael A. Wukmer of Ice Miller LLP
Defendant: Attachmate Corporation
Cause: Declaratory Judgment on Copyright Infringement Claims, Declaratory Judgment on Copyright Infringement Claims for Unregistered Copyrights, Declaratory Judgment on Breach of Contract Claims
Court: Southern District of Indiana
Judge: Judge Jane Magnus-Stinson
Referred To: Magistrate Judge William G. Hussmann, Jr.

Indiana Trademark Litigation Update – Noble Roman’s v. B & MP

This lawsuit involves a franchise arrangement gone bad. Plaintiff Noble Roman’s, an Indianapolis-based corporation, alleges that Defendant breached their Franchise Agreement by failing to pay royalties as required and intentionally misreported sales for the purposes of avoiding payment of franchise fees.

Noble Roman’s Inc. v. B & MP, LLC et al

Court Case Number: 1:14-cv-00206-WTL-MJD
File Date: Wednesday, February 12, 2014
Plaintiff: Noble Roman’s Inc.
Plaintiff Counsel: Steven K. Huffer of S.K. Huffer & Associates PC
Defendant: B & MP, LLC, Leslie Perdriau
Cause: Trademark Infringement, Breach of Contract, Fraud
Court: Southern District of Indiana
Judge: Judge William T. Lawrence
Referred To: Magistrate Judge Mark J. Dinsmore

Indiana Trade Dress Litigation Update – KM Innovations v. Opportunities, Inc.

This is a trade dress lawsuit involving the product packaging for synthetic fiber snowballs. See the Complaint below for a description of the similarities and some really grainy comparison photos.

Plaintiff is based in New Castle, Indiana. Defendant is based in Colo, Iowa, which has a population of 876 and is named after a railroad official’s dog.

KM Innovations LLC v. Opportunities, Inc.

Court Case Number: 1:14-cv-00199-SEB-DML
File Date: Tuesday, February 11, 2014
Plaintiff: KM Innovations LLC
Plaintiff Counsel: Dean E. McConnell of McConnell Intellectual Property Law
Defendant: Opportunities, Inc.
Cause: Trade Dress Infringement, Unfair Competition
Court: Southern District of Indiana
Judge: Judge Sarah Evans Barker
Referred To: Magistrate Judge Debra McVicker Lynch

Indiana Trademark Litigation Update – Chartreuse v. Chartreuse Fragrances

The Plaintiff in this Declaratory Judgment action is an Indianapolis-based LLC that has used the CHARTREUSE trademark in connection with “handmade soy candles” since January 2013.

Screen Shot 2014-02-11 at 7.49.29 AM

Defendant is a New Jersey-based LLC that owns a federal registration for CHARTREUSE in connection with “Candles,” with a date of first use in commerce in April 2002. Defendant sent a “cease and desist” letter to Plaintiff in January 2014 asserting their trademark rights. Plaintiff responded by filing a complaint for Declaratory Judgment of Non-Infringement, Unenforceability and Invalidity.

The Plaintiff asserts in their Complaint that Defendant has not used their trademark for over three (3) years, that the CHARTREUSE mark is descriptive and therefore not entitled to registration and that the claimed date of first use in the registration is inaccurate. If these things can be proved, Plaintiff may have a shot to invalidate the registration. However, in addition to counterclaims based on the federal registration, I’d expect Defendant’s Response to include a full slate of common law trademark infringement counterclaims based on their lengthy use of their trademark.

Maybe I’m in the wrong line of work. There must be good money in “handmade soy candles” if Plaintiff can afford to hire a big law firm to pursue federal litigation to protect a trademark in use for just over a year.

Chartreuse LLC v. Chartreuse Fragrances LLC

Court Case Number: 1:14-cv-00181-WTL-DKL
File Date: Friday, February 07, 2014
Plaintiff: Chartreuse LLC
Plaintiff Counsel: Louis T. Perry of Faegre Baker Daniels LLP
Defendant: Chartreuse Fragrances LLC
Cause: Unenforceability and Invalidity of Defendant’s Mark, Non-Infringement of Trademark
Court: Southern District of Indiana
Judge: Judge William T. Lawrence
Referred To: Magistrate Judge Denise K. LaRue