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HP files suit against Xerox

Hewlett-Packard has filed suit against Xerox alleging trademark infringement.

Hewlett-Packard (HWP) said today it has filed suit against Xerox (XRX) alleging trademark infringement.

The suit, filed this week in San Francisco federal court, alleges that the packaging for Xerox toner cartridges is misleading consumers into believing that HP endorses them. HP identified eight separate toner cartridges, including those for HP's LaserJet II, III, 4 and 5.Xerox makes the toner cartridges, which are compatible with HP printers.

HP is objecting to Xerox's alleged use of 23 HP trademarks on cartridges' packaging, according to the press release. By contrast Xerox carries just eight trademarks of its own. HP alleges that the ratio creates confusion that it stands behind the Xerox products.

Doug Cole, a spokesman for HP, said the company had approached Xerox about the matter prior to filing and that the two companies remain in negotiations.

Representatives for Xerox were not immediately available for comment.