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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10915
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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My son runs a business as a sole trader and has done since

Customer Question

My son runs a business as a sole trader and has done since 2014. He has received a letter from the National Business Register threatening court action because his trading name is ***** ***** same as an existing business. His business is DJ services. The company threatening to take action is a national company providing a light entertainment musiacl TV show. Can you advise what he should do please?
Submitted: 5 months ago.
Category: Law
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
He has been asked to sign a form by August 29th confirming that he will change his business name and if he doesn't the National Business register lawyers will take action.
Expert:  Ash replied 5 months ago.

Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you with this.

Do they just use the same name? Does your son use a logo or anything please?

I assume your son just DJ's locally?

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Hi Ash,
Thanks. Yes they both use Limelight Uk. My son uses a logo and so does the other company but they are totally different logos, See:
http://limelightuk.net/
and http://limelightuk.tv/
As you can see they have different domain names. My son provides DJ services to the South East and the other company does musical talent TV shows and so appears to cover the whole country.
Expert:  Ash replied 5 months ago.

?Thanks. Only where it is confusingly similar would be have to change it.

Bearing in mind your son is a Dj and the other company is a a final entertainment business I can't see how anyone would be confused.

They operate in different industry sectors, the logos are not the same and they are national where your son is not.

Therefore on any view it's nor confusingly siminilar and your son does not need to worry.

He should write back and say he is not going to do anything as there are no similarities.

Can I clairfy anything for you?

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Thanks. But the National Business Register provides the other company with legal cover so they could pursue this whereas my son does not. Is there any risk that if he does as you advise that he could be taken to court or do you think then that Passing Off is unlikely to be found?
Expert:  Ash replied 5 months ago.

I think passing off is unlikely to be found.

Does that clarify?

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Thanks. I have read the letter in detail now and the National Business Register is claiming that the two businesses are confusingly similar because both are in the entertainments sector and it is therefore possible that potential customers would be confused and get diverted away to my son's site. They are also claiming that my son is trying to benefit from the other company's established reputation. The tone of the letter suggests to me that they think they have a case and that they fully intend to take it further. Does your advice remain the same?
Expert:  Ash replied 5 months ago.

It does, yes. Of course they are going to try and suggest they have a claim, it's in their interest to do so

Does that clarify?

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
It clarifies but I'm not reassured.
Expert:  Ash replied 5 months ago.

I dont think there is a claim.

You can't stop anyone bringing a claim against someone else, even if its unfounded.

it will be decided on the evidence. Its like two sets of Solicitors, they are both going to say one side has a better claim. Its all about posturing. Just because they think it does not mean they believe it.

Does that clarify?

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
But the NBR has advised in the letter of notice that my son should seek legal advice. Surely they must think they have enough evidence to pursue this if they have actually told him to go and get a lawyer? Or is this part of the posturing and trying to frighten him into changing the name? Going to court could put his business at risk financially so this is why we need to be sure we are taking the right action.
Expert:  Ash replied 5 months ago.

Not necessarily. I think its posturing.

I think you are fine. There is no passing off according to my view.

Does that clarify?

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
thanks.
Expert:  Ash replied 5 months ago.

Can I help with anything else today please?

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
No thanks.
Expert:  Ash replied 5 months ago.

If this answers your question could I invite you to rate my answer before you go today, otherwise the site doesn’t pay me for the time spent with you. Thanks in advance!

Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10915
Experience: Solicitor with 5+ years experience
Ash and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
ok will do.
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
If you wonder why my rating was only 3 it was because I have used this service previously for employment law questions and also set them at medium detail level but the response this time was far less detailed than I have received previously. I am an intelligent professional myself and find it hard to accept a conclusion when I don't fully understand the reasoning behind it.
Expert:  Ash replied 5 months ago.

You cant stop someone bringing a claim - you just cant.

But whether or not it is successful is another matter

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