Business assignment 3
Burger King, the national franchise, is banned from opening a restaurant within 20 miles of Mattoon, Illinois. So, there is not a Burger King there; no problem, right? Not so fast! In the late 1950s, Gene and Betty Hoots trademarked the iconic name. Well, they trademarked it in Illinois at least. When the national company decided to open a chain close by, the Hoots sued and won their case. However, the national chain was able to keep the name Burger King, but the Hoots were also able to keep the name in accordance with the stipulation that the national chain could not open a store within a 20-mile radius of the original store in Mattoon, Illinois.
In a minimum of 500 words, explain the reasons why this decision was made, and discuss the significance of this case in U.S. trademark law jurisprudence.
Burger King is a mom-and-pop shop. The place is owned by Gene and Betty and not the Burger King Corporation. When Gene and Betty told their attorney about the Burger King name, they made a mistake. He only registered the stores name in Illinois. Afterwards, a business man in Florida bought the federal trademark. Not long after this, Gene and Betty Hoots heard about a burger king that opened in suburban Chicago. They decided to sue Burger King Corporation for using their mark.
The Court however ruled in favor of the Burger King Corporation. The decision was that Burger King Corporation not to put a restaurant within 20 miles of the original mark in Illinois was according to trademark law under the Lanham Act.