HVAC Manufacturer sues Indiana RV Manufacturer for Trademark Infringement

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The Plaintiff in this trademark lawsuit is Trane International, Inc., a well-known manufacturer of HVAC systems and controls. Since at least as early as 1992, Plaintiff has used the trademark BUILT TO A HIGHER STANDARD. Trane owns U.S. Trademark Registration Number 5,380,586 for the trademark BUILT TO A HIGHER STANDARD covering “air conditioners; furnaces; heat pumps” in Class 11 and “installation, repair, and maintenance of heating, ventilating, and air conditioning products” in Class 37.

The Defendant is a Middlebury, Indiana-based manufacturer of recreational vehicles. Defendants have allegedly used an identical BUILT TO A HIGHER STANDARD trademark in connection with temperature control devices incorporated into their recreational vehicles.

Plaintiff first contacted Defendant about the alleged infringement in March 2018 and underwent unsuccessful cease-and-desist negotiations until May 2019. Defendant has continued using the trademark despite Plaintiff’s numerous warnings, leading to this lawsuit.

Stay tuned for updates.

Trane International, Inc. v. Grand Design RV, LLC

Court Case Number: 3:19-cv-00598-DRL-MGG
File Date: Wednesday, August 7, 2019
Plaintiff: Trane International, Inc.
Plaintiff Counsel: John D. LaDue of SouthBank LegalL LaDue | Curran | Kuehn
Defendant: Grand Design RV, LLC
Cause
: Federal Trademark Infringement, Federal Unfair Competition, Common Law Unfair Competition
Court: Northern District of Indiana
Judge: Damon R. Leichty
Referred To: Michael G. Gotsch, Sr.

Complaint:

Breach of contract leads to lawsuit over psychotherapy techniques, trademarks

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The Plaintiff in this lawsuit, Functional Family Therapy Associates, Inc. is a Seattle, Washington-based organization dedicated to training psychotherapists. Plaintiff utilizes a “Functional Family Therapy” protocol to help troubled youth and their families overcome a variety of behavioral problems. Plaintiff provides services in 33 U.S. states and 10 foreign countries.

The Defendants allegedly operate an entity in Bloomington, Indiana called Functional Family Therapy Associates, in violation of Plaintiff’s registered trademarks. One of the Defendants, Sexton, was previously a member of Plaintiff’s organization. More detailed facts are set forth in the (redacted) complaint below.

This lawsuit arises from a breach of contract and the Defendants’ false advertising, unfair competition, and service mark infringement resulting from Defendants’ unauthorized use of Plaintiff’s registered and common law intellectual property rights in Plaintiff’s unique and original family therapeutic services protocol and Plaintiff’s development, testing, training, and marketing thereof.

An unredacted Complaint was filed under seal pursuant to a confidentiality obligation in an agreement between the parties.

F.F.T., LLC v. Sexton, Ph.D et al

Court Case Number: 1:19-cv-03027-RLY-MJD
File Date: Friday, July 19, 2019
Plaintiff: F.F.T., LLC
Plaintiff Counsel: Holiday W. Banta, T. Earl LeVere, Megan Hedrick of Ice Miller LLP
Defendant: Thomas Sexton, Ph.D., Functional Family Therapy Associates, Inc., Astrid Van Dam
Cause
: Breach of Contract, Wrongful Interference with Business Relationships and Prospective Business Advantages, Wrongful Interference with a Contractual Relationship, Unfair Competition, False Advertising, Federal Trademark Infringement, Common Law Unfair Competition, Common Law Trademark Infringement, Unjust Enrichment
Court: Southern District of Indiana
Judge: Richard L. Young
Referred To: Mark J. Dinsmore

Redacted Complaint:

Unauthorized Use of John Lennon Photograph leads to Copyright Infringement Lawsuit

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The Defendant in this copyright infringement lawsuit is alleged to have used Plaintiff’s photograph of John Lennon and Yoko Ono without authorization.

The Plaintiff is a New York-based photographer and the Defendant is a Delaware LLC located in Elkhart, Indiana. The registered Lennon/Ono photograph was apparently included on Defendant’s website, maps.roadtrippers.com, as part of a “Rock and Roll Deaths Tour.”

Most photograph copyright lawsuits, particularly those involving just one photograph, are able to settle early. We’ll continue to monitor this lawsuit so stay tuned for updates.

Tannenbaum v. The2Connect, LLC

Court Case Number: 3:19-cv-00555-PPS-MGG
File Date: Friday, July 19, 2019
Plaintiff: Allan Tannenbaum
Plaintiff Counsel: Richard Liebowitz
Defendant: The2Connect, LLC
Cause
: Copyright Infringement
Court: Northern District of Indiana
Judge: Philip P. Simon
Referred To: Michael G. Gotsch, Sr.

First Amended Complaint:

 

Dispute over TERMINATOR fireworks name leads to trademark lawsuit

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This lawsuit involves a lengthy dispute, dating back almost two decades, over the ability to use the TERMINATOR trademark in connection with fireworks.

The Defendants apparently are using the TERMINATOR trademark pursuant to a license (which Plaintiff claims is invalid) so I’ll wait to see their Answer for more detailed information before I comment fully.

Stay tuned for updates.

North Central Industries, Inc. v. Winco Fireworks, Inc. et al.

Court Case Number: 1:19-cv-02720-RLY-MPB
File Date: Tuesday, July 2, 2019
Plaintiff: North Central Industries, Inc.
Plaintiff Counsel: John H. Brooke of Brooke | Stevens, P.C.
Defendant: Winco Fireworks, Inc., Winco Fireworks International, LLC, Creative Licensing Center Corp. 
Cause
: Federal Trademark Infringement, Federal Trademark Dilution, False Designation of Origin, Federal Unfair Competition, Common Law Unfair Competition
Court: Southern District of Indiana
Judge: Richard L. Young
Referred To: Matthew P. Brookman

Complaint:

Color Me Badd founding members in court over band name dispute

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Two members of the formerly popular R&B group “Color Me Badd” are in a lawsuit in the Southern District of Indiana over the ability of one member to continue using the band’s name in his ongoing solo career.

The named Plaintiff, Bryan Abrams, and Defendant, Mark Calderon, have a recent history of quarreling, including a physical altercation on stage in 2018 that led to Abram’s arrest.

In this lawsuit filed on Monday, July 1, Abrams is challenging Calderon’s ability to use the Color Me Badd name for his solo career, while Calderon (via his attorney) maintains that “Mr. Calderon and Mr. Abrams have equal right to use and exploit the mark provided each party accounts to the other for such use.”

Check out the Complaint (below) for a more detailed history of the parties and Color Me Badd. Stay tuned for updates to see how the parties resolve their band name dispute.

CMB Entertainment, LLC et al v. Mark Calderon and Pyramid Entertainment Group, Inc.

Court Case Number: 1:19-cv-02703-RLY-DML
File Date: Monday, July 1, 2019
Plaintiff: CMB Entertainment, LLC, Bryan Abrams
Plaintiff Counsel: James J. Ammeen, Jr. of Ammeen Valenzuela Associates LLP., Brian D. Caplan of Reitler Kailas & Rosenblatt LLC
Defendant: Mark Calderon, Pyramid Entertainment Group, Inc.
Cause
: Federal Trademark Infringement, Federal Unfair Competition, State Unfair Competition, Breach of Fiduciary Duty
Court: Southern District of Indiana
Judge: Richard L. Young
Referred To: Debra McVicker Lynch

Complaint: