Hammond, Indiana – Attorneys for Plaintiff, Three Floyds Brewing LLC (“Three Floyds”) of Munster, Indiana filed suit in the Northern District of Indiana alleging that Defendants, Floyd’s Spiked Beverages LLC and Lawrence Trachtenbroit, both of Basking Ridge, New Jersey, infringed its rights in United States Trademark Registration Nos. 3,853,136, 4,759,863, 4,341,332 and 5,781,941 (collectively the “Three Floyds’ Marks”). Plaintiff is seeking actual damages, punitive damages, pre and post judgment interest, and attorneys’ fees..
Three Floyds claims to be one of the top craft brewers in the United States, selling under the trade name and mark “THREE FLOYDS” since 1996. Two of the Three Floyds’ Marks at issue in this case are claimed to be incontestable by Three Floyds pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 1065. Three Floyds further claims that its marks have become publicly identifiable and that its customers frequently shorten the Three Floyds’ Marks to “‘FLOYDS’ and refer to ‘FLOYDS’ as the source of Three Floyds’ products and services.”
According to the Complaint, Defendants produce and sell alcoholic lemonade and tea beverages under the name “Floyd’s”. Defendants allegedly filed U.S. Trademark Application Serial No. 87922801 (the “First Application”) with the USPTO for a stylized FLOYD’s logo (the “Floyd’s logo”) for “Alcoholic beverages, except beer” on May 15, 2018. Defendants claimed to have used the Floyd’s logo in commerce since at least May 1, 2018. On or about November 5, 2018, it is alleged that Defendants filed U.S. Trademark Application Serial No. 88181124 (the “Second Application”) with the USPTO to register the mark “FLOYD’S” for “Beer-based coolers” and claimed to have used the mark in commerce since at least January 1, 2018.
Per the Complaint, the USPTO refused the Second Application pursuant to 15 U.S.C § 1052(d) because the Floyd’s logo resembled three of the Three Floyd’s Marks so much that it would likely cause confusion. After the Second Application was refused, the application was allegedly abandoned. Three Floyds claims it has since opposed the First Application in the USPTO’s Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (“TTAB”).
Three Floyds claims there is such a “unity of interest and ownership between and among Defendants, such that any individuality and separateness between them has ceased to exist, and Defendants, and each of them, are the alter egos of each other.” Three Floyds further claims Defendants had actual knowledge and are willfully infringing the Three Floyds’ Mark, especially after the Second Application was refused based on the Three Floyds’ Marks. According to the Complaint, Three Floyds has suffered damage to its business, reputation, and goodwill due to Defendants’ willful infringement. As such, Three Floyds is seeking damages for intentional and willful trademark infringement under 15 U.S.C. § 1114(1), unfair competition and false designation of origin under 15 U.S.C. § 1125(a), and common law trademark infringement and unfair competition.