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State Fair Corny Dog Icon Fletcher’s Wins Messy Family Trademark Battle

A federal judge has issued an injunction that bars an “estranged” Fletcher’s relative from using the name Fletch

Fletcher’s/Facebook

After months of family drama and a legal battle over Dallas’s most beloved corny dogs, Fletcher’s Original State Fair Corny Dogs has secured a major victory over the upstart restaurant that’s currently known as ‘Corndog With No Name.”

On January 21, district judge Sean D. Jordan issued a preliminary injunction that bars Jace Fletcher Christensen, the Fletcher’s relative who started her own pop-up that was originally called Fletch, from using “Fletch,” “Eat Fletch,” or “Fletcher’s” in this or any business venture in the food and beverage industry until the court makes a final determination on whether or not use of these names is an infringement on the Fletcher’s trademark. Jordan’s order also compelled Christensen to remove any advertisements or signage that used the aforementioned names, including posts on social media and the restaurant’s website in the interim.

Here’s a little bit of background: in 2019, Christensen announced plans to start a fried food pop-up that she called Fletch. Immediately after news of Christensen’s pop-ups hit social media, Fletcher’s Original State Fair Corny Dogs distanced itself from Fletch, and ultimately filed a lawsuit in United States District Court to assert its trademark and prevent Christensen from using a name that would stir confusion that her restaurant was somehow affiliated with the iconic State Fair corny dog stand.

Then, earlier this week, Christensen opened her restaurant despite the ongoing legal battle over its name, using tape to cover up any references to the “Fletch” name on her menu and giving the restaurant a cheeky new name: Corndog With No Name. At present, she’s polling fans to find a permanent new name for the restaurant, with options like Corn Dog Queen and FarePlay on the table.

Perhaps most damningly, the judge ruled that Fletcher’s Original State Fair Corny Dogs was able to produce evidence that it was actually losing business because of the confusion caused over Fletch’s name. “Fletcher’s submitted evidence showing that it has lost potential business at several venues because Fletch was selected when the venue thought it had hired Fletcher’s,” the order reads. “Based on all of this evidence, Fletcher’s has met its burden of demonstrating irreparable harm.”

“We regret the confusion some of our fans experienced from Fletch’s actions, but we hope that the court’s order will quickly begin to eliminate the confusion so that our fans may be assured that they are enjoying genuine Fletcher’s™ brand corn dogs,” said Fletcher’s family spokesperson Amber Fletcher in a statement.

Eater has reached out to Christensen for comment on the suit, and will update this post as additional details become available.

Update, 4:51 p.m.: This post has been updated to clarify that the injunction issued against Christensen’s use of Fletch is in effect until the matter is fully settled.

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