Indianapolis, IN –
A trademark attorney for Noble Roman’s, an Indianapolis-based pizza maker, has filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against Brabham Oil, a South Carolina corporation. The compliant, filed by Noble Roman’s lawyer, alleges that Brabham Oil formerly operated seven Noble Roman’s franchise locations. According to the complaint, Brabham continued to use Noble Roman’s trade dress, specifically the Warmer Wrap Trade Dress, after the franchise agreements terminated. The attorney for Noble Romans claims that Brabham Oil has violated the terms of the franchise agreements. The complaint makes claims of trademark infringement, under the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1125(a) and the common law as well as unfair competition, citing 15 U.S.C. § 1125, and breach of the franchise contracts. Noble Romans seeks an injunction and damages. This case has been assigned to Judge Sarah Evans Barker and Magistrate Judge Debra McVicker Lynch of the Southern District of Indiana, and assigned case no. 1:11-cv-00135-SEB-DML.
Practice Tip: When a franchise agreement terminates, typically the franchisee must promptly cease using and return all signs and other equipment containing trademarks. Failure to do so may result in a lawsuit for breach of contract as well as trademark infringement. Noble Roman’s has been particularly aggressive in enforcing franchise agreements. Since 2007 it has filed the following suits in the Southern District of Indiana:
January 27, 2011 NOBLE ROMAN’S INC. et al v. BRABHAM OIL COMPANY and BRABHAM OIL COMPANY
October 9, 2009 NOBLE ROMAN’S, INC. v. CITY CENTER FOOD CORP., INC.
August 31, 2009 NOBLE ROMAN’S INC. v. W.J. INTERNATIONAL GROUP, LLC
July 17, 2009 NOBLE ROMAN’S, INC. v. MARDAN, INC.
July 8, 2009 NOBLE ROMAN’S, INC. v. RENTON WILLIAMS
April 21, 2009 NOBLE ROMAN’S, INC. v. RICHARD A. GOMES and RRCM FOODS, INC.
April 2, 2009 NOBLE ROMAN’S, INC. v. KANDAKAR ALAM
February 17, 2009 NOBLE ROMAN’S, INC. v. EXPRESS LANE, INC.
February 10, 2009 NOBLE ROMAN’S, INC. v. JJP&L, LLC
November 6, 2008 NOBLE ROMAN’S, INC. v. PARDIS & ASSOCIATES, INC.
October 24, 2008 NOBLE ROMAN’S, INC. v DELTA PROPERTY MANAGEMENT LLC, ZACK BROTHERS TRUCK STOP, LLC and STANDARD PETROLEUM CORP.
October 6, 2008 NOBLE ROMAN’S INC. v. JAY’S GAS LLC
April 9, 2008 NOBLE ROMAN’S, INC. v. SHAHRAM RAHIMIAN
March 17, 2008 NOBLE ROMAN’S, INC. v. MEDALLION CONVENIENCE STORES, INC.
December 20, 2007 NOBLE ROMAN’S, INC. v. MICHAEL J. BRUNSWICK, LAURIE BRUNSWICK, and M&L RESTAURANTS, LLC
September 17, 2007 NOBLE ROMAN’S, INC. v. THE FRENCH BAGUETTE, LLC et al
July 26, 2007 NOBLE ROMAN’S, INC. v. MR. RON’S, L.C.
July 19, 2007 NOBLE ROMAN’S INC. v. BAUER BUILT, INC. et al
Filed: January 27, 2011 as 1:2011cv00135 Updated: January 28, 2011 23:03:56
Plaintiff: NOBLE ROMAN’S INC.
Defendant: BRABHAM OIL COMPANY
Presiding Judge:Sarah Evans Barker
Referring Judge:Debra McVicker Lynch
Cause Of Action: Trademark Infringement