The opinion of the court was delivered by: AVIS
This action is instituted by plaintiff, a nation-wide small loan corporation, against defendant who operates a similar business within the State of New Jersey.
The testimony was taken before me, and the plaintiff in an unfair competition claim asks for injunction and damages against permitting the defendant to use the name it does in conducting its business.
(1) Household Finance Corporation was organized in the year 1925, under the laws of the State of Delaware.
(2) General Household Credit, the defendant, was incorporated in October, 1938, under the laws of the State of New Jersey.
(3) Household Finance Corporation and its predecessors in the business has conducted its affairs in various places in the United States and for some years at sundry places in New Jersey, having loaned large sums of money to various clients.
(4) General Household Credit after its incorporation has conducted its business at offices in Vineland, Cumberland County, and at Red Bank, Monmouth County, both in the State of New Jersey, and has loaned large sums of money in its restricted area.
(5) In New Jersey, both of these corporations are operating under the provisions of the statute relating to small loans, and are soliciting and handling the same kind of business.
(6) Household Finance Corporation is the party of greater opportunities, as it has many places in different States of the Union, whereas General Household Credit confines its business within the State of New Jersey.
(7) The testimony does not indicate in any conclusive manner that the defendant has willfully and intentionally used any portion of the name of plaintiff for the purpose of demonstrating an active fraud against plaintiff's name.
(8) It was quite clearly proven that the word "Household" is determined by plaintiff to be a word used throughout the United States to refer to its corporation, and that through advertisements and general knowledge the name may be, and has become, so identified with its corporation as to give it a secondary meaning as applied thereto, and especially in the business in which it is engaged.
(9) Certain witnesses were produced to give testimony, and employees also testified, as to the claimed confusion caused by the ...