However, Roers Management’s trademark and litigation attorney said the attorney’s allegations to the government were reasonable and truthful.
Roers Cos., Founded by Kent and Brian Roers and based in Minnetonka, Minnesota, filed a counterclaim in response to a lawsuit filed against them in early December by Fargo-based Roers management.
Roers Management was founded by Jim Roers, Senator from North Dakota, R-Fargo, and has asked a federal judge to rule that he has exclusive rights to use the Roers brand – including use of the Roers Cos title. – to be used for development and construction projects. Roers management claims it is the original user of the Roers brand. It has been alleged that Jim Neers’ nephews Kent and Brian did not give permission to use the name.
Roers Cos. Denied any wrongdoing in its response to Roers Management’s complaint. Roers Cos. Gained “through extensive and continuous promotion of its products and services under the brand” that has become distinctive and well known throughout the Midwest.
Lawyers for the nephews said in the counterclaim that Roers Cos. First used that name, claiming that Roers Management was entitled Roers Cos. Used incorrectly.
Jim Roers founded his company in 1976. Over the years, it has expanded its services to include construction, development, design, real estate and property management.
The company was run under different names. It is also known as Roers Cos, according to court documents.
Roers’ nephews started their business as a real estate company in 2012, though the Roers Group name dates back to 2004 as a registered name in Minnesota. In 2018 the trade name Roers Cos. Registered with Minnesota.
Roers management attempted to identify the Roers name at the US Patent and Trademark Office in June 2019, but Roers Cos. Declined to submit.
Last names cannot normally be registered as trademarks unless the “acquired distinctiveness” requirements can be met. The name should take on a secondary meaning that is familiar to consumers.
For example, Menards is well known for selling hardware and home improvement supplies. So it’s more than just a family name and qualifies for the secondary meaning.
Roers management claimed in trademark documents that it met this standard, a claim that Roers Cos. Argue.
In his counterclaim, Roers took Cos. A note response to the Official Action Form that will resolve legal issues with the requested trademark. The General Counsel of Roers Management signed the form confirming that the Roers trademark “has become distinctive through the applicant’s essentially exclusive and continuous use of the trademark in trade for the goods / services”.
“This was a deliberately false statement,” claims Roers Cos. In court documents.
The counterclaim does not name the General Counsel, but Roers Cos. ‘The attorneys attached the response to the action form for the office. It was signed by Fargo attorney and North Dakota Rep. Shannon Roers Jones in March. Roers Jones is Jim Roers’ daughter and a Fargo Republican.
The counterclaim argued that the General Counsel had “actual and longstanding knowledge of the use of the Roers Cos name.” By the name Roers Cos. This would contradict what she said on the form, claimed Roers Cos.
Those who fill out federal forms are warned that false information could result in a fine or imprisonment, the counterclaim says. The application for the trademark could also become invalid if the statements turned out to be incorrect.
Roers Management is “confident in its claims and statements,” said Attorney Ashley Bennett Ewald in a statement on behalf of Roers Management. The statements made by Roers Jones were “correct and appropriate on the form, as infringing uses such as Defendant’s did not count against Roers management’s claim to material exclusivity,” added Bennett Ewald.
“My client has been in business under the Roers brand for many decades and has worked hard to build and recognize their brand,” said Bennett Ewald. “While it would have preferred not to have this litigation, it is following the process to protect its business and the employees and customers who rely on it.”
A lawyer from Roers Cos. Declined to comment on this item.