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In-N-Out Withstands Trade Dress Infringement Challenge by Doll N’ Burgers

In 2020, the well-known In-N-Out Burger chain brought suit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, alleging that Doll N’ Burgers’ restaurants looked too similar to In-N-Out’s establishments.  The Court recently ruled against Doll N’ Bugers’ attempt to cancel In-N-Out’s trade dress registration, finding that In-N-Out does own the look of its restaurants’ interior, and is recognizable by the public.  Other issues remain to be decided in the case, such as whether In-N-Out has valid common law trade dress (among the elements being the color scheme, menu layouts, employee uniforms, and interior design), and whether Doll N’ Bugers has infringed upon In-N-Out’s trade dress.  A jury trial has been requested in the case.

Firm Partner, Meredith Frank Mendez, Chairs the 2022 Florida Bar IP Law Symposium, Associates Also Presenting

Firm Partner, Meredith Frank Mendez, is the Chairperson of the 2022 Florida Bar Intellectual Property Law Symposium, the premier event in the state for members of the IP Bar.  Held at the Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables on April 28 and 29, the IP Symposium will feature a series of case study panel discussions covering a wide range of IP law topics, including a mock summary judgment argument before Honorable Lisette Reid from the Southern District of Florida and Honorable Julie S. Sneed from the Middle District of Florida, and the impact of the American Axle & Manufacturing, Inc. case on Section 101 of the Patent Act case with panelist, Honorable Paul Michel, former Chief Judge of the Federal Circuit. Panel discussions will also include relevant new topics such as NFTs and Name, Image, and Likeness in college athletics. The IP Symposium will also have a panel with David Carson, one of the first Copyright Claims Officers at the U.S. Copyright Office to discuss the recently-formed Copyright Claims Board. Each of the panels is expected to cover some of the more advanced aspects of IP.  The Keynote Speaker on Thursday is the Director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Drew Hirshfeld, who will be giving a “fireside chat” about many relevant topics, including the Trademark Modernization Act. The keynote speaker on Friday will be Dennis Crouch, author of the popular Patently-O blog that is regularly read by most U.S. patent law professionals. Firm Senior Associate, W. John Eagan, also will be presenting the patent section of the “Year in Review” program and Firm Associate, Cleo Suero, will moderate a panel about NFTs on April 29.  For more information: https://member.floridabar.org/s/lt-event?id=a1R1R0000088zSaUAI#/Agenda%20-%20Speakers