Legal Brief- Anheuser-Busch, Inc. v. Andy’s Sportswear, Inc., 1996

SoccerBoss
Category:
Law
Price: $5 USD

Question description

Case:

ANHEUSER-BUSCH, INC., a Missouri corporation, Plaintiff, vs. ANDY'S SPORTSWEAR, INC., a California Corporation, Defendant.

DISPOSITION:  [*1] Plaintiff's request for a Temporary Restraining Order GRANTED.

CASE SUMMARY:

PROCEDURAL POSTURE: Plaintiff sought a temporary restraining order under the Federal Trademark Dilution Act, 15 U.S.C.S. § 1125(c), to prevent defendant from distributing T-shirts that allegedly diluted plaintiff's famous mark.

OVERVIEW: Plaintiff brewing company sought a temporary restraining order under the Federal Trademark Dilution Act, 15 U.S.C.S. § 1125(c), to prevent defendant, a sportswear manufacturer, from distributing T-shirts that allegedly harmed plaintiff's famous mark. The court recognized, and defendant apparently conceded, that plaintiff's mark was unquestionably famous. The court also concluded that plaintiff raised serious questions about the harmful effect of defendant's T-shirts on plaintiff's mark, and the court determined that the balance of hardships tipped in plaintiff's favor. The court therefore, pending the preliminary injunction hearing, enjoined defendants from distributing their T-shirts that purportedly diluted plaintiff's mark, and also ordered defendants to recall T-shirts or related products that had already been distributed.

OUTCOME: Temporary restraining order granted because plaintiff's mark was found to be unquestionably famous, plaintiff raised serious issues regarding dilution of its mark by defendant's T-shirts, and balance of hardships tipped in plaintiff's favor.

CORE TERMS: t-shirts, trademark, preliminary injunction, dilution, famous, registered trademarks, trade dress, manufacturing, distributing, unauthorized, designations, putative, artwork, slogans, labels, logos

JUDGES: THELTON E. HENDERSON, CHIEF JUDGE, UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

OPINION BY: THELTON E. HENDERSON

OPINION

ORDER

This matter came on for hearing on August 26, 1996, on plaintiff's application for a Temporary Restraining Order ("TRO"). Plaintiff Anheuser-Busch, Inc., asks the Court to (1) enjoin Defendant Andy's Sportswear, Inc. ("Andy's") from manufacturing and distributing its "Buttwiser" t-shirts and (2) order Andy's to recall those t-shirts currently being offered for sale. Having carefully considered the oral and written arguments of the parties, and the record in this case, the Court hereby GRANTS plaintiff's request, for the reasons discussed below.

Plaintiff bases its motion on several federal and state trademark causes of action. For the purposes of the instant TRO, however, the Court only addresses plaintiff's claim under the recently enacted Federal Trademark Dilution [*2] Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1125(c). [HN1] Under the Act, an injunction may issue if (1) the mark is famous; and (2) the defendant's use "causes dilution of the distinctive quality of the mark." Id. Based on the record and authorities currently before the it, the Court concludes that plaintiff is entitled to a TRO under this test.

The Court finds that Plaintiff's marks are unquestionably famous, as defendant appears to concede. In addition, the Court finds that plaintiff has, at the very least, raised serious questions with respect to whether defendant's t-shirts will "dilute" these marks, as that term is defined under 15 U.S.C. § 1127. Plaintiff has also established that the balance of hardships tips sharply in its favor. Accordingly, under, EEOC v. Recruit U.S.A., Inc., 939 F.2d 746, 752 (9th Cir. 1991), plaintiff is entitled to injunctive relief.

Pending the hearing on the preliminary injunction, Andy's, its successors, officers, agents, employees, and anyone acting in concert with them or at their behest, are enjoined from manufacturing, screening, distributing, marketing, displaying, or selling the "Buttwiser" t-shirts, or any other t-shirts or goods bearing any unauthorized designs,  [*3] slogans, labels, designations, logos, artwork, or putative trademarks similar to Anheuser-Busch's state and federal registered trademarks, or the Budweiser(R) trade dress.

The Court further orders that, pending the preliminary injunction hearing, the above designated parties shall recall and/or remove from all locations to which they sold or distributed any and all Buttwiser t-shirts and any other t-shirts or other goods bearing any unauthorized designs, slogans, labels, designations, logos, artwork, or putative trademarks similar to Anheuser-Busch's state and federal registered trademarks, or the Budweiser(R) trade dress, and to maintain such goods and materials until further order from the Court.

The above TRO is effective on Plaintiff's filing an undertaking in the sum of $ 15,000. The Court will hold a hearing on the preliminary injunction on Tuesday, September 10, at 3:00 p.m. Defendant's opposition shall be filed and served no later than September 3. Plaintiff's reply shall be filed and served no later than September 6.

IT IS SO ORDERED. DATED 8/28/96, THELTON E. HENDERSON, CHIEF JUDGE, UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT


Tutor Answer

(Top Tutor) Daniel C.
(997)
School: Purdue University
PREMIUM TUTOR
Studypool has helped 1,244,100 students
Ask your homework questions. Receive quality answers!

Type your question here (or upload an image)

1825 tutors are online

Brown University





1271 Tutors

California Institute of Technology




2131 Tutors

Carnegie Mellon University




982 Tutors

Columbia University





1256 Tutors

Dartmouth University





2113 Tutors

Emory University





2279 Tutors

Harvard University





599 Tutors

Massachusetts Institute of Technology



2319 Tutors

New York University





1645 Tutors

Notre Dam University





1911 Tutors

Oklahoma University





2122 Tutors

Pennsylvania State University





932 Tutors

Princeton University





1211 Tutors

Stanford University





983 Tutors

University of California





1282 Tutors

Oxford University





123 Tutors

Yale University





2325 Tutors