My client's asking me for an opinion. I've told him to seek a legal opinion, but I thought I'd see if anyone here has come across a similar situation.
My client is a distributor for XYZ company, a manufacturer. His business has official permission to use XYZ-Northwest as his name. He has that official name, logo and domain name.
About 8 years ago, he purchased the name XYZparts.com. He set up a site to sell parts and XYZ company was aware of this and gave their blessing. (XYZ did have a website at that point, but seemed totally unaware of the potential of the Internet.)
XYZ company is now telling my client that they are going to take his domains and set up their own parts site this summer. They do have a trademark on their XYZ name. I've asked my client to find anything in writing where they gave him permission to use the name or any written documents that shows they were aware of it years ago.
If anyone has an opinion or experience with this, feedback is welcome. I guess I'm most interested in knowing that if XYZ knew about this for 8 years and didn't do anything...could they do something now?