YAWN. Yet Another Continuance — Merck Vs. Merck Federal Lanham Act Name Fight Likely To Settle, Before Trial

Yes, I still strongly suspect a settlement will emerge, and long before trial, here.

As I’ve said consistently for several years, here — the two companies ought to update and restate their global agreement(s) — on naming rights, to take into account the realities of a largely borderless internet enabled 21st Century economic landscape.

And so, as each did last week, the parties are delaying yet another of the routinely scheduled status hearings, overnight, here — purportedly due to scheduling difficulties — but this date has been on the books since at least April 2016 (hmmm. . .) — so I continue to smell the distinctive odor of settlement, wafting on the fall breeezes. Here’s the letter text, filed overnight in the federal District Court in New Jersey:

. . . .We, along with Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, represent Defendant, Merck KGaA, in the above matter, and write jointly with McCarter & English, LLP and Hogan Lovells, LLP, counsel for Plaintiffs, Merck & Co., Inc. and Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., to request that the Rule 16 Conference currently scheduled for October 7, 2016 at 10:30 a.m. be adjourned to either the afternoon of October 17, or October 18, or 24, 2016. We make this request because of schedules of counsel involved in this case.

If this is acceptable to the Court, we request that Your Honor “so order” this letter with the new date and time for the Rule 16 Conference and enter it on the docket.

If the proposed dates are unacceptable to Your Honor, please let us know some alternate dates.

Thank you for your courtesies and consideration. . . .

[Signed by a Blank, Rome partner]

Now you know. Onward. G’mornin’ to all the telecommuters out there. . . smile. . . .

नमस्ते

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