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JBaxLaw
JBaxLaw, Attorney
Category: Business Law
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Experience:  Experienced in business formation and licensing issues
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I am an owner of a chain of three urgent care centers in Jacksonville,

Resolved Question:

I am an owner of a chain of three urgent care centers in Jacksonville, FL. And recently another urgent care center has opened across the street from us. Although this is a free market place, what has gotten me really upset is that their brochure is a 95% copy of ours down to everything.

Even the order of how certain procedures are placed on the brochure is the same, including what is placed under each heading, down to being a tri-fold brochure is the same. Some of the phrases and paragraphs have been down right copied from our website.

This business opened last month. And we have been open since 2005. Do i have any legal rights to sue them or put pressure on them? THanks.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Business Law
Expert:  JBaxLaw replied 4 years ago.

Entire paragraphs were copied?

 

Were the phrases commonly used medical terms?

 

Please explain.

 

Thank you

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
They are common medical terms, however they way they are placed and the ones appear on the brochure are identical in every way. For example under Procedures we have:

-EKG
-X-ray
-Nail fungal inefction treatment
-STD diagnosis and treatment
-cruthces, braces and splints

etc etc

They have the exact same things. If ten medical offices created a brochure what would be the chances that under the same bullet point they place, crutches, braces and splints and say "STD diagnosis and treatment"? Also when you consider that they have opened right across the street from us?

On our website we have:

"Courteous and friendly Staff"
"Expert Medical Care"

and they have copied that exactly on their brochure. Under our "In House Lab Tests" category, we have 8 tests listed and they list the exact same tests. I could have listed 6 or 10 tests but 5 yrs ago decided on 8 tests to advertise and they list the exact same tests.

HOpe that makes more sense.
Expert:  JBaxLaw replied 4 years ago.

I appreciate the additional information. As to the location, it will have no bearing on any copyright protection you have for the brochure. It is apparent the list of procedures was copied, but the issue is whether copyright laws afford you protection.

 

The US Copyright Office states the following will not be copyrighted:

"Titles, names, short phrases, and slogans; familiar symbols

or designs; mere variations of typographic ornamentation,

lettering, or coloring; mere listings of ingredients

or contents"

 

Your list off procedures does would not be afforded copyright protection it appears. Additionally, terms such as "expert medical care" will not be afforded protection. Unfortunately, it appears your competitor's actions are premissible.

 

 

For more information on copyright protections, see: http://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ1.pdf

 


Thank you




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JBaxLaw, Attorney
Category: Business Law
Satisfied Customers: 11310
Experience: Experienced in business formation and licensing issues
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