A good idea can be worth a fortune. This is the reason why intellectual property laws were created in order to allow people with good ideas and original concepts to have a chance to make their fortunes. This includes protection for trademarks which can be valuable, especially for well-known businesses or entities with a respected reputation. Recently, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) filed a business litigation lawsuit in order to protect its intellectual property rights to its own trademark.
MEDC, a state-sponsored organization, is asking that a federal court stop a real estate company from using its trademark. The legal complaint filed in mid-November alleges that Pure Michigan Real Estate Inc. is infringing on MEDC's trademark by using the Pure Michigan name. This trademark has been used by MEDC as a marketing tool to make Michigan appear more attractive for tourists and businesses.
The real estate company claims that it was misled by MEDC into believing that they had permission to use the trademark, which is also being used by dozens of other businesses that have not been sued by MEDC. The defendant real estate company argues that the State of Michigan misled the real estate company by providing broker licenses, a corporate ID, support and information. The real estate company has also registered a website and a Facebook page with the Pure Michigan name.
The real estate company will now have a chance to defend itself against the business litigation lawsuit over the Pure Michigan trademark. The two parties will have to present their sides of the case in front of a judge. The party with the best legal argument supported by evidence will have the best chance of prevailing in the court case.
Source: M Live, State agency sues North Branch company to stop use of Pure Michigan trademark , Gary Ridley, Nov. 29, 2013