Boston Carriage, Inc. v. Boston Suburban Coach, Inc. et al. (D. Mass. 21-cv-10688).

  • January 10, 2022

Boston Carriage sued Boston Suburban Coach, as well as four individuals who are alleged to own or control Boston Suburban Coach in April 2021, asserting (among other claims) copyright and trademark infringement in connection with the latter’s use of “Logan Car Service” as a mark and as a part of their url.   Each of the defendants moved to dismiss, saying that no copyright registration was alleged (an application was said to have been filed, but no actual issuance was asserted), that the complaint did not adequately plead secondary meaning in the “Logan Car Service” mark that would entitle it to protection, that the state law claims surrounding alleged copying of content from the Plaintiff’s website were preempted by the Copyright Act, and that the remaining claims were unsupported by non-conclusory factual allegations.

Boston Carriage responded both with an opposition to the motions to dismiss and with a motion to amend the complaint.  Judge Talwani addressed the latter of these, allowing the amended complaint to be filed.  She rejected Boston Carriage’s assertion that it could amend the complaint by right.  She rejected Boston Carriage’s assertion that the allowance of an extension of time to respond to the motion to dismiss by implication extended the period of time under Fed. R. Civ. P. 15(a)(1)(B) to amend as a matter of right.  She noted, however, that where leave of court is necessary, leave should be freely granted where justice so requires and granted Boston Carriage leave to amend its complaint both to add pr-filing material and post-filing material.  She noted that the motion to dismiss was still pending, and determined that judicial economy was best served by allowing the amended complaint and addressing the motion to dismiss after the new complaint was on file.

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