Indiana Trademark Litigation: Warsaw-Based Medical Company, Zimmer, Inc., Sues for Trademark Infringement

South Bend, Indiana – Attorneys for Plaintiff, Zimmer, Inc. (“Zimmer”) of Warsaw, Indiana, filed suit in the Northern District of Indiana alleging that Defendants, Zimmer MedizinSystems of Irvine, California and Zimmer Elektromedizin GmbH, of Neu-Ulm, Germany, infringed its rights for multiple trademarks, as seen below:

 

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Zimmer is seeking a permanent injunction, damages, costs, and attorneys’ fees.

According to the complaint, Zimmer is a globally trusted brand for its musculoskeletal care and has utilized the mark ZIMMER in connection with its musculoskeletal goods and services since 1927. Zimmer claims it began using the “Z” logo by 2004 and consumers have come to associate the “Z” logo with Zimmer goods and services including those services for sports medicine and podiatry. Zimmer alleges it has a great amount of commercial success and its annual sales are in the billions, with multiple millions of dollars being used for advertising and promotions each year.

Zimmer claims Defendants have offered goods and services relating to cosmetics and aesthetics applications for years, with which Zimmer had no issue. According to the complaint, the issues began when Defendants began using “Zimmer” “Zimmer MedizinSystems” and “Zimmer MedizinSysteme” (the “Unauthorized Marks”) for the treatment of sports and podiatry injuries. Zimmer alleges Defendants have also used a “Z” logo to promote and advertise their goods and services.

Per the complaint, Zimmer and Zimmer Elektromedizin GmbH entered into an agreement in 2003 for Zimmer Elektromedizin GmbH to utilize the mark “Zimmer MedizinSysteme” in the European Union for a limited purpose. Zimmer claims it did not consent to any use in the United States and that if it did, it consented only to the use of the name Zimmer Elektromedizin GmbH, not Zimmer or Zimmer MedizinSysteme as names or marks on their own. According to Zimmer, it has contacted Defendants, by counsel, on multiple occasions to inform them of Zimmer’s objections of the Unauthorized Marks being used, but Defendants have refused to discontinue the use of the Unauthorized Marks.

Zimmer is seeking damages for federal trademark infringement pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 1114(1). Next, Zimmer is seeking recovery for false designation of origin, passing off, and unfair competition under 15 U.S.C. § 1125(a). Pursuant to Indiana common law, Zimmer is seeking damages for trademark infringement and unfair competition. Finally, Zimmer is alleging trademark dilution under 15 U.S.C. § 1125(c).

Zimmer Inc. Complaint

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