Cannabis Companies Dispute Veritas Common Law Trademark

Veritas Farms, Inc. filed a motion to dismiss an intellectual property lawsuit filed against it by Carrick-Harvist, LLC, which is doing business as Veritas Fine Cannabis. The plaintiff alleged that it had rights to “two unregistered common law trademarks,” which the defendant was reportedly infringing. Veritas Farms claimed in its motion that the plaintiff in its complaint failed to state a claim, did not have enough facts to support its claims, and does not possess the common law trademarks.

The defendant, which produces hemp products, was accused of trademark infringement, false designation of origin, violating the Anti-Cybersquatting Consumer Protection Act, unfair competition, and a “declaratory judgement of superior trademark rights.”

The plaintiff is a “recreational cannabis wholesaler” whose products are sold within the state of Colorado, where its business is located because of federal laws preventing interstate commerce. The defendant is based in Florida, but sells cannabidoil, or CBD, products across the United States, which is legal according to the 2018 Farm Bill. As a result, the defendant argued that Carrick-Harvist’s alleged common law trademarks, which it alleged the defendant is infringing, including the “V Design Mark” and the “Veritas” mark should not apply throughout the United States.

The defendant alleged in its motion that the complaint did not properly plead sufficient facts to state a cause of action for each of the counts against it, specifically the complaint did not “sufficiently plead” that the defendant used an identical or similar mark, or that its use of the mark would confuse consumers.

Veritas Farms said that the complaint itself did not support the plaintiff’s claims, saying “in some instances the Complaint pleads facts that, if taken as true, plead the Plaintiff out of court by demonstrating that the Plaintiff has no common law trademark rights in either of its alleged trademarks.”

Veritas Farms, represented by Brian Bianco with Akerman LLP, asked for the court to dismiss the claim. Carrick-Harvest is represented by Greenspoon Marder LLP.