Same Name

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by grshppr, Jun 12, 2003.

  1. grshppr

    grshppr LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 301

    I've got a big problem. My business name is Grass Hoppers Lawn and Garden Care. It has been registered for exclusive use in British Columbia. A new business started up in town called "Grass Choppers Lawn and Garden Care. His logo is similar, name sounds similar and even the people I bought my company off thought that this guys' truck was one of mine.

    A few things have happened so far.

    1) A lady called me to compain that one of my guys dumped a coffee cup out by her car. She gave hime a dirty look and he said some things to her that she would not even repeat to me. This happened at a Walmart, and I knew none of my guys were there that day. I asked her to decribe the truck he drove, and she told me it was a green Jeep (Grass Choppers)We only have red Chevy picckups. I sorted it out with her and explained about this guy and it was OK.

    2) I have done three or four quotes where the customer intended to call me, but saw his ad in the paper and called Grass Choppers indtead. They all realized after he showed up that it wasn't me and ended up getting us to do the work any way, but they were very upset with this guy and felt used. One lady even told hm to get the f@#k off her property.

    Here is what I have done so far. I placed several ads in the paper right beside his explaining that we are in no way associated with this company etc... I also registered the name Grass Choppers (he hadn't done that of course he he he) My lawyer said that his name is similar enough to mine and the law allows me to persue him for illegal use of the name. Now that I registered his name, I have even more right to tell him to cease and desist use of my name. My lawyer sent two letters to him asking him to do so, but reponse. All I can do now is procede to sue him for what ever the lawyer says I can ( he has a list of a bunch of things he is doing illegal) However this could get expensive.

    Should I wait and see how long he lasts? I found out he charges $40/hr for 2 guys, so at that rate he may be gone soon.

    Or should I really go after this guy and get this name thing sorted out now? I talked to the girl at the landfill about him and he is apparently a real jerk. Every one I have talked that has talked to him says the same. Do I really want to deal with a guy like this?

    Sorry for the long post guys and gals but I'd appreciate any advice or maybe some stories of similar experiences. Thanks
  2. C & S

    C & S LawnSite Member
    Messages: 125

    I have the same problem. I talked the the other guys and they said they would change their name, but nothing yet. They don't seem real bright, so I figure they will be gone soon enough, hopefully.
  3. Navig8r

    Navig8r LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 477

    No.... let your lawyer do it!

    How many people have dealt with this a--h-le and not relized it wasn't you or your guys???

    If he's bad with customers and people in general, and possibly a bad businessman, he probably will not fight too well if cornered (legally)....... sue him........ You probably can file the paperwork on your own, without your lawyer, but talk to your lawyer first....... good move on the name registration.... (I almost had to do the same thing, but the one I heard of that was similar to mine, was nowhere to be found, so no bother.)

    Good Luck.... Keep us posted!

    Maybe you should run a new ad.... "We will manicure your lawn, others just chop it!":D
  4. grshppr

    grshppr LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 301

    LOL Navig8r :D The more I think about it the more I think I will sue him, and just let the lawyer take care of him. A reputation takes a long time to build up. Our business is 11 years old, and is well known in the community. The last thing I need is this guy screwing that up. A lot of people won't realize the slight difference in the name and will think it is us. I will definately keep you all informed on what happens.
  5. grshppr

    grshppr LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 301

    Just emailed the city and let them know about him operating without a business licence. He should be a little ticked when he gets a $225 bill in the mail.:cool: I am such a mean guy :angel:
  6. Rustic Goat

    Rustic Goat LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,194

    In my opinion, that was dumb. So what, then he'll be licensed.

    Pursue the legal course immediately, damage is already taking place, if he has a mind to, or finds out you turned him in (like reading these posts you nit wit) he may purposely set out to do major damage in your name.

    You could wait & see, but why?
    Didn't mean any personal insults to you here, just trying to get your attention.
  7. gogetter

    gogetter Banned
    Messages: 3,256

    It almost seems like he was intentionally picking that name to capitalize off yours. The "Garden Care" part is kind of unusual and I doubt that it's a coincidence that he would happen to pick that same thing.

    Sounds like you need to let your lawyer have at 'em.

    Hope it all works out for ya.
  8. Mickhippy

    Mickhippy LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,275

    Go after him! Your probably loosing money and besides, you might be able to get rid of one of your competitors.
  9. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,943

    Yes, the "Lawn and Garden Care" is a bit unusual. If he had chosen "Grass Choppers Landscaping", it may not have been too bad.


    YOU, yourself better watch out that the Grasshopper Lawn mower company doesn't get wind of your name! They may NOT want to be associated with YOUR name!

    Go ahead with your lawyers though, but you are just as much a copycat as this guy! :eek:

    Good Luck though. This guy is very much in the wrong here.
  10. Ajays

    Ajays LawnSite Member
    Messages: 133

    When I first started, I chose the name Ajays Lawn Care. I never registered it or anything. About a year later I start getting calls that people like my add in the yellow pages. I'm thinking I never put an add in the yellow pages so I check and sure enough there was another Ajays advertising in the yellow pages. I started seeing their signs around town so I went downtown to check to see if they registered the name and they hadn't. I could have registered it right there but I was planning to incorporate at the time and was going to change the name anyway. Now that I know better, I registered my new business name and all the other names that sound like it. 7 names total. Should never have this problem again.

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