313 F.3d 338 (5th Cir. 2002), 01-11197, Quick Technologies, Inc. v. Sage Group PLC

Docket Nº:01-11197.
Citation:313 F.3d 338
Party Name:65 U.S.P.Q.2d 1130 QUICK TECHNOLOGIES, INC., Plaintiff-Appellant, v. The SAGE GROUP PLC and, Sage US Holdings, Inc. Defendants-Appellees. Quick Technologies, Inc., Plaintiff-Appellant, v. Sage Software, Inc., Defendant-Appellee.
Case Date:December 09, 2002
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
 
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313 F.3d 338 (5th Cir. 2002)

65 U.S.P.Q.2d 1130

QUICK TECHNOLOGIES, INC., Plaintiff-Appellant,

v.

The SAGE GROUP PLC and, Sage US Holdings, Inc. Defendants-Appellees.

Quick Technologies, Inc., Plaintiff-Appellant,

v.

Sage Software, Inc., Defendant-Appellee.

No. 01-11197.

United States Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit

December 9, 2002

Rehearing Denied Jan. 20, 2003.

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Paul V. Storm (argued), John W. MacPete, Storm & Hemingway, Dallas, TX, for Plaintiff-Appellant.

Kenneth A. Plevan (argued), Scott Dawson Brown, Eleni M. Roumel, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, New York City, for Defendants-Appellees.

Appeal from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas.

Before DeMOSS, STEWART and DENNIS, Circuit Judges.

CARL E. STEWART, Circuit Judge:

Quick Technologies, Inc. ("QTI") filed suit against The Sage Group plc ("Sage Group"), Sage U.S. Holdings, Inc. ("Holdings"), and Sage Software, Inc. ("Sage Software") (collectively "Defendants") for trademark infringement and unfair competition. Prior to trial, the district court dismissed QTI's claims against Sage Group for lack of personal jurisdiction. The district

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court further denied QTI's request to amend the pretrial order to add a corrective advertising claim. Ultimately, QTI prevailed at trial against Holdings and Sage Software on its trademark infringement claims and the district court entered permanent injunctions in QTI's favor. 1 QTI, however, did not prevail on its claim for an accounting of Holdings' and Sage Software's profits. QTI appeals.

FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

QTI was formed in 1992 and initially provided online information about distributors in the promotional products industry (e.g. companies that imprint a business's logo onto coffee mugs, key chains, flashlights, etc.). QTI claims that by 1995, it had expanded its product offerings to include such things as "online databases, online supplier advertising and other databases and business software." QTI began using the mark SAGE INFORMATION SYSTEM in January 1992 and has been using a variety of marks which incorporate or use the word SAGE (e.g. SAGE, SAGE INFORMATION SYSTEM, SAGE-CD, SAGE-ONLINE, and SAGE-CATALOG LIBRARY) continuously since that time.

Sage Group is a public limited company organized under the laws of England and Wales. Sage Group manufactures and sells software for accounting and business management purposes and its principal place of business is in England. On October 14, 1988, Sage Group received registration for the mark SAGE in the United Kingdom. Beginning in 1991, Sage Group, acting through Holdings, acquired several American companies that developed and sold accounting and business management software. By 1995, Sage Group began to consider whether the company should adopt an international brand name and ultimately adopted SAGE as such.

On May 17, 1995, QTI filed an application with the United States Patent and Trademark Office ("USPTO") to register the mark SAGE INFORMATION SYSTEM. This mark was published for opposition in 1996, at which time Sage Group claims it first learned of QTI's use of the SAGE INFORMATION SYSTEM mark. Negotiations began between Sage Group and QTI regarding use of the mark. These negotiations eventually broke down and Sage Group filed a Notice of Opposition to QTI's use of the SAGE INFORMATION SYSTEM mark with the USPTO.

On March 25, 1997, Sage Group filed an intent to use application for the mark SAGE with the USPTO. Sage Group claims that it abandoned this application on March 11, 2002. 2 In 1998, Holdings and Sage Software began using the SAGE mark in connection with their respective products. On May 22, 1998, QTI filed a lawsuit against Sage Group and Holdings alleging, among other things, trademark infringement. On April 22, 1999, QTI filed a similar suit against Sage Software and the cases were later consolidated into the instant case. On September 10, 1999, the district court granted a motion by Sage Group to dismiss the claims against it for lack of personal jurisdiction.

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This case was originally set for trial in November 2000. On November 9, 2000, the district court reviewed the parties' joint proposed Pretrial Order. Soon thereafter, the district court sua sponte continued the case until April 2001. In January 2001, QTI retained new trial counsel. On April 2, 2001, QTI served Defendants with a proposed amended Pretrial Order seeking, among other things, to add a damages claim for corrective advertising. On April 11, 2001, the district court rejected QTI's new Proposed Pretrial Order and entered the joint pretrial order previously submitted to the court in November 2000.

The case was tried before a jury. In addition to instructing the jury on the likelihood of confusion issues, the district judge asked that the jury determine whether Holdings' and Sage Software's infringement was done willfully, i.e. "Has QTI proven ... the Defendants intended to cause confusion, to cause mistake or to deceive?" The jury was further instructed that if it answered "yes" to the question of willful infringement, it was to "[s]tate the damages, if any you award QTI by reason of the profits made by the Defendants from the sale of software products since each Defendant began using SAGE in commerce." The jury returned a verdict for QTI on most of the likelihood of confusion issues but did not find that the Defendants' conduct was willful. Thus, the jury did not award an accounting of profits. The district court entered final judgment on May 30, 2001, stating that "[h]aving considered the verdict and the applicable authorities, the Court determined that permanent injunctive relief should be entered in favor of [QTI], but that no damages should be awarded."

DISCUSSION

QTI presents the following issues on appeal: (1) whether the district court erred in dismissing against Sage Group for lack of personal jurisdiction, (2) whether the district court abused its discretion in denying QTI's request to amend the Pretrial Order to add a new damages claim based on a theory of prospective corrective advertising, and (3) whether the district court erred in instructing the jury that QTI must prove that the Defendants' infringement was done willfully before it could award an accounting of profits under Section 35(a) of the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1117(a), and in instructing the jury that willfully means "to do an act voluntarily and intentionally and with the specific intent to cause the likelihood of consumer confusion." 3

I. Personal Jurisdiction

"The district court's determination of the exercise of personal jurisdiction over a defendant is a question of law subject to de novo review." Mink v. AAAA Dev. LLC., 190 F.3d 333, 335 (5th Cir. 1999). When personal jurisdiction is challenged, the plaintiff "bears the burden of establishing the district court's jurisdiction over the defendant." Id. When the district court rules on a motion to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction "without an evidentiary hearing, the plaintiff may bear his burden by presenting a prima facie case that personal jurisdiction is proper."

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Wilson v. Belin, 20 F.3d 644, 648 (5th Cir. 1994). In making its determination, the district court may consider the contents of the record before the court at the time of the motion, including "affidavits, interrogatories, depositions, oral testimony, or any combination of the recognized methods of discovery." Thompson v. Chrysler Motors Corp., 755 F.2d 1162, 1165 (5th Cir. 1985).

QTI contends that it presented a prima facie case for specific jurisdiction under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 4(k) (2). Rule 4(k) (2) states:

If the exercise of jurisdiction is consistent with the Constitution and laws of the United States, serving a summons or filing a waiver of service is also effective, with respect to claims arising under federal law, to establish personal jurisdiction over the person of any defendant who is not subject to the jurisdiction of the courts of general jurisdiction of any state.

"Rule 4(k) (2) thus sanctions personal jurisdiction over foreign defendants for claims arising under federal law when the defendant has sufficient contacts with the nation as a whole to justify the imposition of United States' law but without sufficient contacts to satisfy the due process concerns of the long-arm statute of any particular state." World Tanker Carriers Corp. v. M/V Ya Mawlaya, 99 F.3d 717 720 (5th Cir. 1996) (emphasis omitted). "The due process required in federal cases governed by Rule 4(k) (2) is measured with reference to...

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