For the half-year to 30 June 2014, the IPKat's regular team is supplemented by contributions from guest bloggers Alberto Bellan, Darren Meale and Nadia Zegze.

Two of our regular Kats are currently on blogging sabbaticals. They are David Brophy and Catherine Lee.

Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Sink or Schwim? The legal assault on USA Enterprises begins

The IPKat has been a tireless fighter against the perpetrators of  intellectual property scams and the purveyors of parasitic, worthless quasi-official services and catalogues (see for example earlier posts here, here, here and here). He therefore takes great heart to see that his transatlantic friends at Leason Ellis LLP are taking the initiative described in the media release which they issued yesterday and which, in relevant part, is reproduced here:
"Leason Ellis LLP, an intellectual property law firm located in White Plains, New York, has filed a Complaint against USA Trademark Enterprises, Inc. of Sarasota, Florida, and its principals Timea Csikos and Andras Nemeth, with the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, White Plains Division. The case, 12-cv-0620, has been assigned to the Honorable Edgardo Ramos. A copy of the Complaint is available at www.trademarkblog.com
The multi-count Complaint alleges that defendants have engaged in false advertising and unfair
competition by marketing a catalog of trademark registrations, which offers no value as the published information is freely available in the online records of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Defendants are further confusing consumers into thinking that the catalog is legitimate by sending unsolicited notices designed to make it appear as though USA Trademark Enterprises, Inc. is an official government enterprise or otherwise affiliated with any entity associated with the trademark registration process.

According to [the IPKat's friend and initial inspiration for launching this weblog] Martin Schwimmer, lead counsel for Leason Ellis in the case, and author of the well-known Trademark Blog, “our clients are routinely receiving bogus notices from companies like USA Trademark Enterprises. Unbelievably, USA Trademark Enterprises even sent a notice to us when we registered our firm’s logo. They are obviously mining the records of the USPTO and targeting novice trademark registrants who can be mistakenly led to believe that the catalog has any legitimate public notice value.”

Adds Schwimmer, “We are concerned that U.S. trademark registrants receiving these solicitations have actually handed over money for what amounts to mere public notice services – a benefit already bestowed upon a U.S. trademark registrant as a matter of law. Anyone who has done so should immediately contact competent trademark counsel concerning those transactions. Of course, we are also interested in speaking with them about their experiences as they are likely relevant to our case.”

David Leason, Managing Partner of Leason Ellis, said “by targeting our clients and us, USA Trademark Enterprises has interfered in our business [this is presumably why it is the law firm, and not a scam-victim, which is bringing this action under the New York General Business Law, Articles 349 and 350, seeking an injunction, an account of profits, the tripling of punitive damages and practically every dreadful fate short of being chained to a rock and made to listen to Pachelbel's Canon till the end of time] and cast a shadow over the legitimacy of trademark-related communications. In filing suit, we are out to protect our clients, our business, and the integrity of the trademark process from predatory and deceptive marketing.” ...".
The IPKat says, if you are a trade mark proprietor or applicant, or someone who acts for one, who has been adversely affected by the activities of  USA Trademark Enterprises, do please email Peter Sloane or Cameron Reuber at Leason Ellis LLP, or call 914-288-0022.   Merpel says, if you can bear a little 1970s nostalgia, see what else comes from White Plains.

No comments:

Subscribe to the IPKat's posts by email here

Just pop your email address into the box and click 'Subscribe':