- Individuals Found Personally Liable for Company’s Infringing Activities of the Applicant’s Trademark Rights
- September 12, 2016 | Authors: Adrian J. Howard; Beverley Moore; Chantal Saunders
- Law Firm: Borden Ladner Gervais LLP - Ottawa Office
- Trans-High Corporation v. Conscious Consumption Inc., 2016 FC 949
In this trademark infringement action, the Court found that there was sufficient evidence to show that there was a likelihood of confusion between the Applicant’s use of its trademark HIGH TIMES and the Respondents’ previous prominent use of HIGH TIMES on its storefront, their continued use of the cannabis motif and HIGH TIMES mark in association with the sale of counterculture wares in the store, and their continued use of HIGH TIMES on their website and online advertising.
The Court also found that the Respondents passed off their business and wares as being associated or connected with the Applicant’s business and wares, contrary to subsection 7(b) of the Trade-marks Act; and that the Respondents used the Applicant’s registered trademarks in a manner that is likely to have the effect of depreciating the value of the goodwill attaching thereto, contrary to subsection 22(1) of the Trade-marks Act.
Finally, the Court concluded that each individual Respondent was personally liable for the infringing activities outlined above. The evidence clearly indicated that the two individual Respondents are the owners and directing minds of the corporate Respondent. The Court ultimately found the individual Respondents personally liable as the willful infringement of the Applicant’s trademarks rights cannot be a legitimate exercise of their corporate duties as officers, directors or the controlling minds of the corporate Respondent.