Going through a bankruptcy can mean the loss of many valuable assets, but what about your own name? Well, your stage name at least.
Rapper David Darnell Brown, better known as “Young Buck,” is faced with this possibility in his ongoing bankruptcy case, which is now headed to the liquidation phase since reorganization is no longer considered feasible. In legal terms, the process has moved from a Chapter 11 to a Chapter 7 filing.
Brown filed for bankruptcy last year when faced with paying $300,000 in back taxes to the IRS, a more than $10 million debt to rapper 50 Cent, and child support; some of his possessions have already been confiscated, but now other of his assets are going through liquidation to further help pay off creditors — and one of those is his trademark in the name “Young Buck.”
Brown isn’t happy with the possibility. As he told The Tennessean, “My name, Young Buck, has been with me since I was 12, 13 years old. . . . At the end of the day, it’s ridiculous. My name wasn’t given to me by G-Unit Records. They didn’t name me Young Buck. My mother calls me Young Buck.”
If someone else were to buy the trademark, Brown could end up dealing with trademark infringement allegations if he continued to use the stage name. Registered trademark protection allows the owner to seek damages from anyone else using the mark in a confusingly similar manner.
The next hearing in Brown’s case is scheduled for the end of January.
What do you think of the possibility of someone losing their trademark in a bankruptcy proceeding?