From our private database of 35,400+ case briefs...
Sengoku Works Limited v. RMC International, Limited
United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
96 F.3d 1217 (1996)
Between 1982 and 1985, Sengoku Works Limited (Sengoku) (plaintiff), a Japanese company, sold kerosene heaters in the United States through a combination of companies, including C.C.I., a company partially owned by Cort Clark. These heaters bore the trademark “Keroheat”. Clark subsequently founded RMC International Limited (RMC) (defendant), which obtained federal registration of the Keroheat mark in 1992. Between 1985 and 1994, RMC was the exclusive importer and seller of Sengoku-manufactured heaters, which bore the Keroheat trademark. Pursuant to the RMC-Sengoku distribution arrangement, RMC’s name appeared on all products and packaging and it handled all marketing, advertising, complaints, and returns. However, Sengoku controlled the heaters’ quality and uniformity, and other dealers attributed the Keroheat mark to Sengoku. Allegedly believing that Sengoku was not responding adequately to alleged quality problems, RMC began importing and selling Keroheat-marked heaters manufactured by a Korean company. Sengoku sued RMC in federal court for, among other things, trademark infringement. In its defense, RMC argued that it—not Sengoku—owned the Keroheat trademark. Sengoku responded that, as the manufacturer, it necessarily owned the trademark. The district court granted Sengoku’s request for a preliminary injunction prohibiting RMC from selling the Korean-made heaters with the Keroheat trademark. After a jury trial, Sengoku was awarded one dollar in damages on its trademark claim. The district court also ordered the cancellation of RMC’s registration of the Keroheat trademark and entered a permanent injunction against RMC using the mark. RMC appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Hall, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 617,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Berkeley, and Northwestern—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students.Unlock this case briefRead our student testimonials
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students.Learn about our approachRead more about Quimbee
Here's why 617,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 35,400 briefs, keyed to 984 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.