Minnesota Based Restaurant Taco Chons Being Sued Over Trademark Infringement
A small Minnesota-based restaurant by the name of Taco Chon is being sued by a major fast-food retailer with a similar name. Juan Ramos is the owner of Taco Chon a Mexican restaurant with locations in Burnsville and St. Cloud says his family owns a restaurant in Mexico by the same name. It is named after his father.
Unfortunately for him, fast-food giant Taco Johns has filed a lawsuit against him for Trademark Infringement. He has always dreamed of opening his own restaurant in the United States, but that dream has hit a snag with the current lawsuit.
Ramos told FOX9:
It’s totally two different things, John and Chon… It doesn’t have J or apostrophe or anything like that. Changing our name is just like giving up. Giving up on a dream. We are going to fight for our dream because we came to America with a dream.
Whether Ramos agrees or not this is going to be an uphill fight for a small business owner to go up against a franchise like Taco Johns. According to Wikipedia Taco Johns was founded back in 1969 in Cheyenne Wyoming and in 2013 it had 425 locations in the United States. I would guess in 2022 that number is way bigger. Currently, there are 3 taco Johns in Duluth, 1 in Superior, and 1 in Cloquet.
When FOX9 reached out to Taco Johns they released the following statement: "We have an important obligation to our franchisees, most of whom are small business owners themselves, to not allow others to use facsimiles of Taco John’s. We take no joy in enforcing our trademark rights in court against a small business owner and only do so after other options have been exhausted. Because this is pending litigation, we will have no further comment on this matter, which we hope will be resolved quickly."
Ramos has said that he does not have enough money to hire a lawyer so he might have to represent himself in court. He currently has a Gofundmepage with a goal of $150,000. As of today, he has raised $2,909.