Sheehan & Associates, P.L.C.

Business litigation case involves 2 restaurants

One restaurant group in a state neighboring Michigan recently claimed to be a victim of trademark infringement. The claim revolves around another eatery's alleged use of its trademark name for one of its menu items -- a burger. The restaurant group in this business litigation case has thus filed a lawsuit against the other restaurant.

Umami Restaurant Group said it has worked hard to build consumer recognition of its Umami Burger restaurant chain, the name of which has been trademarked. However, another restaurant called BopNgrill is offering a menu item known as the Umami burger. The Umami Restaurant Group said the BopNghrill burger name has the potential of diluting its own Umami Burger trademark.

The Umami Restaurant Group said it tried to get in touch with BopNgrill several times asking the eatery to take the burger off its menu. However, BopNgrill reportedly did not respond to these requests. The restaurant group has thus asked for the court to prevent the other restaurant from selling the Umami burger. It is also asking the other restaurant to reimburse it for damages as well as destroy any advertisements and promotional materials with the Umami burger in it.

In a business litigation case involving trademark infringement, the court will primarily focus on whether one company's alleged use of another business's trademark may lead to confusion among consumers. It will also look at whether or not the reported improper use of the trademark might cause the trademark to be tarnished. An understanding of related laws may help Michigan business owners who believe their trademarks have been infringed upon to make sure that their trademark rights are protected in the end.

Source: chicagobusiness.com, "Umami Burger sues Chicago restaurant over name", Ally Marotti, June 18, 2015

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