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Thursday, December 30, 2010

IHOP drops case against International House of Prayer

LOS ANGELES (MCT) – Could pancake peace be at hand?

The International House of Pancakes dropped its trademark infringement lawsuit against a church, agreeing to resolve its dispute with the International House of Prayer out of court.

On Dec. 21, the restaurant chain dismissed its case, with its lawyers citing “ongoing mediation with the defendants,” according to documents filed in federal court in Los Angeles.

The chain sued the church in September, alleging it misappropriated IHOP trademarks with its website, ihop.org, and in signs and events at its headquarters in Kansas City, Mo., and California ministries. The church also has affiliates in San Jose, Santa Maria and Dublin, Calif.

When the lawsuit was filed, restaurant spokesman Patrick Lenow said the church’s use of IHOP and related phrases confused customers, undermined trademarked uses and risked publicly linking the chain of 1,500 restaurants with a particular faith or church.