Hyson USA Inc. v. Hyson 2U, Ltd., No. 14-3261 (7th Cir. 2016)Annotate this Case
Hyson USA and Hyson 2U are food distributors. Hyson USA is wholly owned by its president, Tansky, and has operated since 2006. Kaminskas was one of its managers. In 2012, Hyson USA encountered serious financial difficulty, culminating in the loss of its liability insurance, forcing the company to suspend operations. Months later, Kaminskas established Hyson 2U. Hyson USA transferred its branded inventory and equipment to the new company. Hyson 2U leased the warehouse from which Hyson USA had operated. Tansky then switched roles with Kaminskas and went to work at the new company. Hyson 2U operated in the same manner and in the same markets as Hyson USA. In 2014, Tansky was fired. He and Hyson USA, again operational, sued Hyson 2U and Kaminskas alleging trademark infringement under the Lanham Act. The judge dismissed the trademark claims, citing acquiescence, and relinquished supplemental jurisdiction over the state-law claims. The Seventh Circuit reversed, stating that acquiescence is a fact-intensive equitable defense that is rarely capable of resolution on a motion to dismiss.