Intellectual property disputes can quickly become convoluted and aggressive, so it is important for businesses that hold trademarks and copyrights to be aware of their rights under the law. Given the recent article from the Hartford Courant highlighting the lawsuit brought by the owners of the classic Mystic Pizza claiming trademark infringement from a similarly named pizzeria in Pennsylvania, infringement issues may seem more relevant than ever to Connecticut companies. Businesses that hold trademarks are recommended to remain vigilant to infringement, due to the loss of income and reputation that can result from such actions.
According to Entrepreneur, there are several valuable steps that trademark owners should take when identifying whether or not infringement has occurred. The United States Patent and Trademark Office outlines that in order for true infringement to happen, then consumers must not be able to tell the difference between the competing products, based on the type of product, the location of the product and the closeness of meaning between the trademark names. When a business owner is still convinced that trademark infringement has occurred, then legal help should be sought from an experienced and professional law firm.
If unsuccessful, cease and desist letters can lead to state or federal lawsuits, depending on the size and scope of the trademark. Usually, companies fight for financial damages in compensation due to the infringement. Trademark infringement can also include online concerns, such as copycat domain names. There are increasingly more ways in which marketing departments and predatory companies attempt trademark infringement, thanks to fewer online regulations, so businesses should remain aware of the forms that infringement can take.