A Los Angeles insurance agent has filed a counter-claim against 21st Century Insurance Group (formerly known as 20th Century Insurance) over the use of the name “21st Century Insurance” in Los Angeles County. Alfred Bunmi George, owner of Los Angeles-based 21st Century Insurance and Financial Services for the past 13 years, seeks a permanent injunction against the Insurance Group from using the name “21st Century Insurance” in Los Angeles County.
In Jan. 2003, 21st Century Insurance Group filed a complaint against George, which was preceded by a letter from the group’s counsel, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, that stated George purposely chose his company name to copy and take advantage of the new “21st Century Insurance” name. They alleged the Insurance Group owned the name “21st Century Insurance” and that George could not use the name “21st Century Insurance and Financial Services” ever again, explicitly stating that George needs to change the name of his company immediately. They did so, even though a large number of public documents clearly indicate that 20th Century did not change their name until late 1999, to reflect the turn of the century.
20th Century Insurance changed its name to 21st Century Insurance between 1999 and 2000 and held a multi-million dollar advertising campaign claiming its “new name” as a change for the new millennium. George has been conducting business in Los Angeles under “21st Century Insurance and Financial Services” since 1990.
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