Indiana Trademark Litigation: Klipsch Takes New “Gray Market” Dispute to Federal Court

Indianapolis, IndianaKlipsch Group, Inc. of Indianapolis, Indiana filed a lawsuit in the Southern District of Indiana alleging trademark infringement and unfair competition by a “gray market” seller of Klipsch audio equipment.

Defendant in this Indiana trademark litigation is listed only as “,” as Klipsch indicates that the website’s proprietors “conceal[] their true identity from customers by using drop shipping addresses and registering their domain name through a third party.”  Jurisdiction in Indiana is asserted on the grounds that, inter alia, Defendant sells infringing goods in Indiana.

Klipsch contends that Defendant interfered with its intellectual property rights in three Klipsch trademarks.  The trademarks at issue are U.S. Trademark Registration Nos. 978,949; 2,917,215 and 3,863,511.  These registrations, which have been issued by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, cover various forms of the KLIPSCH® trademark.

Concealedaudio, which is not an authorized distributor of Klipsch audio products, has been accused of selling products labeled as “new” Klipsch products when, Klipsch states, the products are materially different products from genuine Klipsch audio products.  Specifically, Klipsch asserts that Concealedaudio has removed product serial numbers from genuine Klipsch speakers and replaced them with fake serial numbers before selling the product to the public.  The removal of the serial number voids any warranty offered by Klipsch.  The purchaser’s warranty is also void because the product was “not purchased from an authorized dealer.”

A trademark attorney for Klipsch filed this lawsuit in Indiana federal court, listing two counts:

  • Count I: Federal Trademark Infringement in Violation of 15 U.S.C. § 1114
  • Count II: Federal Unfair Competition in Violation of 15 U.S.C. § 1125(a)

Klipsch asks the court for damages, including treble damages, as well as injunctive relief, costs and attorneys’ fees.

The case was assigned to District Judge Tanya Walton Pratt and Magistrate Judge Matthew P. Brookman in the Southern District and assigned Case 1:17-cv-00034-TWP-MPB.


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