For many businesses, their image and name is everything. Therefore, businesses will go a long way to protect their reputation, name and their copyrights.
In a recent case, a New Jersey business was sued by world renowned Yale University for copyright infringement in federal court. In the case — filed in Camden — Yale University alleged that the business, named Yale Academy, was deliberately impersonating Yale University in order to confuse potential clients. Furthermore, the University claims that Yale Academy used the same colors as the university and references the Ivy League in its promotional materials. In the suit, Yale University asked for $100,000 in damages and for Yale Academy to change its name.
Yale Academy is a college preparation service for high school students with six locations. It serves mainly Asian and Asian-American students. The business owners claim that they meant no harm and came up with the name by combining bits of their last names.
Recently, the parties have settled the case. Under the terms of the settlement, Yale Academy will change its name to Y2 Academy. The parties did not disclose whether any monetary settlement was also made in the agreement.
An intellectual property suit can seem daunting to a New Jersey business. Businesses should make sure they understand the different types of intellectual property, how to get the correct protection for its intellectual property and how to protect their rights once they have them. With the right help, businesses can avoid these conflicts and still grow their reputation for the better. Without a thorough knowledge of intellectual property rights, businesses could inadvertently violate others’ rights or fail to adequately protect their own rights.
Source: Litchfield County Times, “New Jersey Business Changes Name After Being Sued by Yale,” July 6, 2013