Molly English-Bowers Aug. 27, 2015, 12:51pm


A restaurant company using the name Hot Shots Bar and Grill is suing another Hot Shots Bar and Grill, alleging the identical names and marketing strategies infringe on the plaintiff's ability to conduct business.

1636 Country Club Plaza Inc., a Missouri corporation that owns and operates eight Hot Shots restaurants, filed a lawsuit June 11 in the Sherman Division of the Eastern District of Texas against Hot Shots Bar and Grill, a Texas company.

The lawsuit alleges service mark and trade name infringement and unfair competition, both in violation of state and federal statutes, false designation of origin, and violation of the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act. The plaintiff says it has operated under its current trade name for nearly 30 years.

Not only do the restaurant facades look similar, according to entered photographs, but so are both parties' web addresses, of which the defendant has registered five, the suit says. Although the defendant Hot Shots operates solely in Texas, the plaintiff Hot Shots brought this suit because owners want to open a location in Dallas, the lawsuit states.

1636 Country Club Plaza seeks damages triple the defendant's profits and triple the damages the plaintiff has sustained, attorney fees and $100,000 for each domain name the defendant is using. It is represented by attorney William D. Cramer, of Lathrop & Gage's Chicago office, as well as attorneys David V. Clark and Luke Meriwether of the firm's office in Kansas City, Mo.

Sherman Division of the Eastern District of Texas case number 4:15-cv-00396-ALM.

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