We reported previously that SCC sued Quality Chain for infringement of its patented “split-bushing” tire chain coupler. SCC alleged that QCC sent its customers a brochure that contained an airbrushed version of SCC’s patented tire chains as well as disguised versions of other SCC products. Shortly thereafter, SCC filed a motion for a temporary restraining order and an order to show cause why a preliminary injunction should not issue. Specifically, SCC requested the following:
- That defendant Quality Chain Corporation (“Quality Chain”) be immediately enjoined from circulating and/or distributing an advertising brochure, which on information and belief, falsely claims SCC’s proprietary and protected tire chain products as its own; and
- That defendant Quality Chain be immediately enjoined from distributing or offering for sale certain tire chain products that infringe SCC’s trade dress rights.
SCC’s memorandum in support of its motion for a TRO was principally based on trade dress (i.e., yellow tire-chain tensioner clips) and false advertising allegations. The court granted the TRO on November 1, but later dissolved it on November 5 following a hearing regarding SCC’s (unsuccessful) request for a preliminary injunction. On November 22, Quality Chain filed its answer. With respect to the patent infringement claim, Quality Chain denied SCC’s infringement theories and maintained it only offered to sell Quality Chain products. Interestingly, Quality Chain did not assert any patent invalidity defenses. The parties have since adopted a case management schedule [PDF]. Claim construction briefing is due April 29, 2011, followed by a Markman hearing on May 9, 2011.