X

Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.
Five months after Fowler White in Miami filed a federal trademark infringement suit against its namesake to the north, Fowler White in Tampa has struck back with a counter punch. Tampa-based Fowler, White, Gillen, Boggs, Villareal and Banker last month filed its own trademark infringement suit against Fowler, White, Burnett, Hurley, Banick & Strickroot in Miami seeking to protect its moniker and eliminate any confusion between the two. The dueling suits mar what long had been a policy of peaceful coexistence. The firms’ history dates back some 60 years to a time when Cody Fowler and Morris White formed the Tampa law firm, which then specialized in insurance defense and maritime and admiralty law. That same year, Fowler also opened an office in Miami. Each office continued to grow until 1969, when they split and three firms were formed, two of them using the Fowler and White names. Relations remained cordial until February, when Fowler White in Miami sued Fowler White in Tampa alleging it had broken a 30-year-old verbal agreement not to use the abbreviated name. Not only had the Tampa office started using the shorter name on firm stationary and in advertising, but it also filed an application for a federal trademark. The suit filed in U.S. District Court in Miami by the Miami firm, alleged that, despite written demands, the Tampa firm refused to withdraw its application or stop using the name. Its use, argued Fowler White in Miami, would only result in confusion. True, says Fowler White in Tampa, but if anyone should be using the name, it is the office to the north. “It is Fowler-Miami that is the junior user and the infringer,” says the Tampa office in its answer to the lawsuit. In its countersuit, Fowler-Tampa claims that it has been using the shortened version of the name since 1970 and that it had granted Fowler-Miami “an implied license” to use the name, which it now claims has been terminated. Phone calls to Fowler White-Tampa were not returned by deadline. Despite the obvious contention, insists John Strickroot, a managing partner at Fowler White in Miami, there is hope for a resolution. “There have been settlement discussions and we are optimistic it will be resolved,” Strickroot said. “We are hoping everyone will be able to use the Fowler White name.”

This content has been archived. It is available through our partners, LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law.

To view this content, please continue to their sites.

Not a Lexis Advance® Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Not a Bloomberg Law Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Why am I seeing this?

LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law are third party online distributors of the broad collection of current and archived versions of ALM's legal news publications. LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law customers are able to access and use ALM's content, including content from the National Law Journal, The American Lawyer, Legaltech News, The New York Law Journal, and Corporate Counsel, as well as other sources of legal information.

For questions call 1-877-256-2472 or contact us at [email protected]

 
 

ALM Legal Publication Newsletters

Sign Up Today and Never Miss Another Story.

As part of your digital membership, you can sign up for an unlimited number of a wide range of complimentary newsletters. Visit your My Account page to make your selections. Get the timely legal news and critical analysis you cannot afford to miss. Tailored just for you. In your inbox. Every day.

Copyright © 2021 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.