United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Monroe Division
H.L. PEREZ-MONTES UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Luv N' Care, Ltd. (“LNC”) filed “Motion
for Sanctions in the Form of an Adverse Inference and
Attorneys' Fees Due to EZPZ's Spoliation of
Evidence.” ECF No. 324. Because LNC has not shown that
Defendant Eazy-PZ, L.L.C. (“EZPZ”) destroyed
evidence or acted in bad faith, the Motion is DENIED.
filed a Complaint for Unfair Competition and Declaratory
Judgment (Doc. No. 1) against Defendants Lindsey
Laurain and EZPZ. LNC seeks damages and injunctive
relief for false advertising, false representation, unfair
competition under the Lantham Act, 15 U.S.C. §§
1051, et seq., and the Louisiana Unfair Trade
Practices and Consumer Protection Law, La. Rev. Stat.
51:1401, et seq. ECF No. 21. LNC also seeks a
declaratory judgment that LNC violated no valid claim of
EZPZ's design patent, utility patent, or any other
intellectual property (“IP”) right. ECF No. 21.
The alleged IP rights at issue are:
(1) On July 17, 2014, Laurain filed United States Patent
Application No. 14/333, 682 (“the ‘682 Utility
Application”) for Surface Contact Self-Sealing
Integrated Tablewear and Dining Mat. ECF Nos. 21, 27.
(2) On December 3, 2014, Laurain filed a design patent
application for “Dining Mat with Integrated Tablewear,
” and on December 15, 2015, the United States Patent
and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) issued United
States Patent No. D745, 327 (“the 327 Design
Patent”). ECF Nos. 21, 27.
(3) On March 17, 2016, the application for the 682 Utility
Application was published as United States Published Patent
Application No. 2016/0073805, Surface Contact Self-Sealing
Integrated Tablewear and Dining Mat (“the 805
Publication”). ECF No. 27.
(4) On October 11, 2016, the USPTO issued United States
Patent No. 9, 462, 903, Surface Contact Self-Sealing
Integrated Tablewear and Dining Mat (“the 903 Utility
Patent”). ECF Nos. 21, 27.
seeks an injunction and damages for EZPZ's alleged acts
of false advertising, false representation, and unfair
competition, all based on claims of patent infringement. ECF
No. 21. LNC alleges the product giving rise to this action is
a feeding mat, which is an integrated self-sealing silicone
place mat with a built-in bowl or plate that attaches to a
table using suction. ECF No. 21. LNC alleges EZPZ has no
valid existing IP right that covers any aspect of LNC's
feeding mats. ECF No. 21. LNC further alleges EZPZ sells
competing feeding mats. ECF No. 21.
filed an answer and counterclaim against LNC, alleging that
LNC: (1) infringed the 903 Utility Patent and the 327 Design
Patent; (2) violated 15 U.S.C. §§ 1114 and 1125(a);
and (3) unfairly competed with EZPZ in violation of state and
common law. ECF No. 27. EZPZ seeks monetary damages and a
permanent injunction against LNC. ECF No. 27.
answered EZPZ's counterclaim. ECF No. 33. EZPZ then
amended its counterclaim, asserting claims against
third-party Counter-Defendants Admar International, Inc.
(“Admar”) and Nouri E. Hakim
(“Hakim”). ECF No. 40. Defendants Admar, Hakim,
and LNC answered, asserting affirmative defenses. ECF No. 45.
filed a Motion for Sanctions in the Form of an Adverse
Inference and Attorneys' Fees Due to EZPZ's
Spoliation of Evidence. ECF No. 324. EZPZ opposes that
motion. ECF No. 334. LNC replied. ECF No. 335. Briefing is