14
Jun/04

SUISMAN SHAPIRO v. SUISMAN & SHAPIRO


Further illustration of proposition that one (in this case two) may not use one’s own name if to do so would cause confusion.  Suisman has a dispute with his firm, SUISMAN, SHAPIRO, WOOL, BRENNAN, GRAY & GREENBERG (known as SUISMAN SHAPIRO), leaves, and hooks up with Shapiro to form SUISMAN & SHAPIRO.  Relying on evidence of bad faith (Suisman threatened to find someone named WOOL, as well), the court enjoined Suisman and Shapiro from using a firm name in the form Suisman & Shapiro.

This NY Lawyer article reports that the Judge articulated dicta that will trouble name partners thinking of moving practices, in that the name of the firm had acquired secondary meaning to describe the firm.

Your state bar is the starting point for researching the ‘letterhead’ rules governing your firm.

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