Hello, I will be assisting
a quick search in the USPTO trademark's office reveals thousands of trademarks that contain the word 'Ice'
Question: is the company that contacted you in the field of dance / cheerleading / performance ?
Yes. They are called Indiana Cheer Enterprises Athletic Center. It used to be called Indiana Cheer Elite, which is where the initials ICE come from. Our meaning of the word Ice in our name is XXXXX XXXXX acronym, since it is cold in Wisconsin.
have you confirmed that they in fact have a trademark?
Not sure how to do that. I just received the letter yesterday from their attorney.
it looks like they do have a trademark go here: DANGEROUS URL REMOVED?f=searchss&state=4805:299ze2.1.1 and search for serial number 78226937
you would need to confirm
What year was it trademarked ?
December 14, 2004
when did you start using the term Ice?
unfortunately it does not look good
because their registration preceded your use
you could claim that there is no confusion between your use of Ice and theirs but under trademark law they have to protect their mark or risk loosing it so you should take into consideration that they could sue
they use it for their name Indiana Cheer Enterprises (ICE). It doesn't stand for anything in our name which is WIDC, Wisconsin Ice Dance and Cheer.
Is it trademarked nationally or by state ?
by definition a trademark is national
You will have to either change your name or sue them and try to invalidate their use of the name
the second option is very pricey and generally the chances are not good
Does it matter that we are a not for profit business ? can we be called WIDC ?
it does not matter. the key is confusion in the market place. If there is a chance the two of you can be confused with one another then their right will be superior to yours
from the point of view of risk exposure and cost you should consider not using Ice
I trust this answered your question
I'm sorry I am not the bearer of better news. Please don't shoot the messenger...
yes, but not the answer i was looking for
Please rate my service. Without your rating I do not get compensated for my work
DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.
The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).