A federal district judge has granted the University of Houston’s motion for a temporary injunction against the former South Texas College of Law. The University of Houston (“UH”) filed for the injunction after the South Texas College of Law (“STCL”) recently rebranded itself to the Houston College of Law. The district court found a substantial threat of irreparable injury if the Houston College of Law was allowed to continue operating under that name and ordered STCL to cease use of the name.
The University of Houston believes that the name change creates a false affiliation between the two schools. UH has sued for trademark infringement and unfair competition and has a high likelihood of success on the merits. South Texas College of Law is also located in Houston, which can create consumer confusion based on geographic proximity. Along with the name change, SCTL adopted a red and white color scheme similar to that of UH’s. Quite frankly, it’s hard to discern any intent but to ride on the coattails of UH’s established success.
Perhaps before the next rebranding South Texas College of Law will consult its trademark professor or local trademark attorney.