BM0742: Potential Claims against Aman Rita would like to know her various intellectual property rights and how to best protect such rights: Business Law Report, NYP

Your Assignment

Please prepare a report on the following:

Part 1: Potential Claims against Aman

Rita would like to know her various intellectual property rights and how to best protect such rights (including the photographs for TFF’s promotional and marketing materials). Rita would also like to know ifshe can successfully sue Aman for infringement of intellectual property rights and if so, what would be the legal remedies. Rita would also require your advice on Amin’s use of the photographs taken for TFF.

Rita would also like to know if TFF can successfully enforce the non-competition clause in Aman’s employment contract.

Part 2: Potential Claims by Customers and Muthu

Rita would like to know whether TFF is in breach of any of the implied terms under the Sale of Goods Act or any other legislation and if so, what legal remedies that the customers might have. Rita would also like to know if Mochi can successfully sue her in the tort of negligence.

Rita would also like to know if Muthu could successfully sue TFF for the sum of $8,000 being the profit he would have earned, and for the distress and embarrassment he has suffered.

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Case Study

Part 1 (50 marks)

Rita is the owner of a chain of fish head curry restaurants called The Fiery Fish (“TFF”). From a single outlet in Little India in 2015, it has since expanded with an additional three outlets in Singapore and has won numerous awards as Singapore’s finest fish head curry restaurant. TFF is known in the market by its logo and slogan “Feel Flames”.

TFF’s signature dish is its special flaming hot fish curry, “The Flame” which is marinated and cooked with a special curry paste that is a closely guarded secret of TFF.

In 2019, Aman was employed as the Head Chef of TFF. Aman’s employment contract contains a clause providing that Aman is not to engage in any business in Singapore in competition with the business of TFF, and for a period of two (2) years following the date when he ceases employment with TFF.

In the first two (2) years as Head Chef, Aman managed to improve on TFF’s signature dish. In December 2021, TFF engaged Aman’s brother, Amin, a professional photographer, to take photographs to be used in TFF’s promotional and marketing materials.

TFF and Amin negotiated a fee and confirmed other details such as the price quotation and number of photographs to be provided to TFF via email. There was no mention in the email or terms and conditions of the quotation as to copyright ownership of the photographs.

As TFF’s dishes and Aman were featured heavily in the photographs, Aman became known as TFF’s celebrity chef. Aman also helped to finalise Rita’s original manuscript for “The Art of Flaming Fish” – a cookbook on how to prepare the perfect curry fish dish – by providing substantive editorial changes and the photos for the manual. TFF enjoyed one of its most profitable years in 2021.

In January 2022, Rita and Aman had a falling out. This resulted in Aman resigning from TFF. On 1 May 2022, Aman opened a new restaurant in Siglap called The Flaming Fish and used a logo similar to TFF, with the only difference being that the fish is horizontal with a crown and uses the slogan “Feel Fire”.

The Flaming Fish also serves the same signature dish as TFF. Aman has plans to open three other outlets in the same areas where TFF’s outlets are located. Aman has also recently contracted with a local book publisher to publish 10,000 copies of the cookbook that he previously helped Rita to complete, but under the title “Aman’s Art of Flaming Fish”.

Rita notices that TFF’s business revenue has been dismal since the opening of Aman’s restaurant. Rita checks with her existing customers and many of them inform her that they have been going to The Flaming Fish restaurant, as they were under the impression that it is a new TFF outlet. Rita also discovers that Aman has been using the photographs taken by Amin for TFF, which Amin has licensed to Aman for use as promotional materials for The Flaming Fish and Aman’s new cookbook. Rita is extremely furious by Aman’s betrayal and feels that the years of building the TFF brand is being destroyed.

Part 2

To boost TFF’s sales, Rita decided to promote her signature dish at a discounted price. The promotion on TFF’s website read as follows

In mid-June 2022, due to overwhelming demand and a spike in global prices of fresh fish, Rita decided to replace the fresh fish with frozen fish. She obtained the frozen fish from a supplier Mr. Yoku Nai that she had not worked with before.

However, someone in the industry had told Rita that Mr. Yoku Nai may not be selling fish that should be frozen in accordance with regulations and the conditions that the fish were kept in were not up to standard. Given Rita’s
desperation and lack of budget to procure the fresh fish, using Mr. Yoku Nai’s frozen fish could breathe life back into TFF’s flailing situation.

However, Rita’s customers picked up on the change in the fish and sent in numerous complaints. Many of them demanded a full refund. Muthu is the owner of Muthu’s Curry House, an upscale Indian restaurant that was to have its grand opening on 29 June 2022. On 1 June 2022, Muthu came across the signature fish curry promotion on TFF’s website.

He contacted Rita and entered into a contract with TFF for the delivery of 400 signature fish curry dishes on 29 June 2022. Although the signature dishes were also available at Aman’s restaurant, Muthu chose to order them from TFF, as they were the most reasonably priced. Muthu was also confident that this would net him additional profits of $8,000 for the grand opening.

However, due to the initial backlash from customers from the change of fresh fish to frozen fish, Rita contacted Muthu on 20 June 2022 to inform him that TFF would be unable to deliver its signature dishes on 29 June 2022.

Muthu went into a panic and contacted Aman to determine if it would be feasible for his restaurant to replace the cancelled deliveries by TFF. Aman provided a quotation for the price of $50 per dish. As this would cut into Muthu’s expected profits from the signature dish by $4,800, he decided against ordering from Aman.

Muthu is distressed as he feels that the reputation of Muthu’s Curry House would suffer when his customers find out about the change in menu. He wants to claim against TFF a sum of $8,000 being the additional profits he would have earned, and for the distress and embarrassment he has suffered.

On another occasion, Maras, Rita’s delivery personnel, was tasked to deliver some orders of TFF’s signature dish to Bubba’s home for a special dinner with his wife, Mochi. Maras had overslept in TFF’s delivery van and had forgotten to keep the signature dish in the van’s heated apparatus designed to keep food fresh and bacteria free.

He was required to deliver the dish within two (2) hours from the preparation, but because he overslept, it was delivered more than four (4) hours late. As a result, Bubba’s wife Mochi fell sick because the signature dish contained high levels of bacterial contamination. Bubba’s wife was hospitalised and incurred medical expenses.

Rita is worried if these customers have legal remedies against TFF. Rita admits that her management of her staff, the hygiene standard and the food at TFF may have fallen below acceptable standards as she has been too engrossed with managing her flailing business.

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The post BM0742: Potential Claims against Aman Rita would like to know her various intellectual property rights and how to best protect such rights: Business Law Report, NYP appeared first on Singapore Assignment Help.

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