Harold R. Bruno III

Equity Shareholder

Hal specializes in franchise and intellectual property litigation and arbitration. He also has a wide range of experience in trademark registration and commercial litigation.

Hal is admitted to practice law in Colorado, Wyoming, and the District of Columbia as well as the United States Courts of Appeals for the 1st, 4th, 9th, 10th, and Federal Circuits.

Hal is an approved arbitrator with the American Arbitration Association. He is a member of the American Bar Association’s Intellectual Property Law Section, the ABA Forum Committee on Franchising, the International Trademark Association, and the South Asian Bar Association.

Hal is listed in Best Lawyers in America® for Franchise Law and was selected as the 2016, 2018, and 2022 “Lawyer of the Year” for Franchise Law in Denver. He has also been recognized as a Super Lawyer® in either franchise law or intellectual property litigation since 2010 and has earned an AV rating from his peers through Martindale-Hubbell. Most recently, Hal was selected as a “Legal Eagle” by the Franchise Times. Hal was President of Temple Micah from 2007 to 2009 and volunteers for the Rocky Mountain Immigration Advocacy Network.


  • B.A. in Finance, University of Illinois, With Honors
  • J.D., University of Colorado

Court Admissions:

  • Colorado
  • Wyoming
  • District of Columbia

Key Matters:

Representative Cases:

  • Taco John’s International, Inc. v. Taco Chon, 2023 WL 5756847 (D. Minn. 2023) (defeated defendants’ summary judgment motion to dismiss client’s trademark infringement and trademark dilution claims).
  • The Franchise Consulting Company, Inc. v. Crestcom International, Inc., 2020 WL 13567914 (S.D. Fla. 2020) (successfully challenged jurisdiction and venue for franchisor client in case brought by franchise broker).
  • Vierican, LLC v. Midas International, LLC, 2020 WL 4430967 (D. Hawaii 2020) (successfully obtained a stay of franchisees lawsuit pending arbitration for franchisor).
  • James and Eby v. Taco John’s International, Inc., 425 P.3d 572 (Wyo. 2018) – trial court summary judgment affirmed in favor of franchise client on claims of two former executives for breach of employment contracts.  The assertion by executives that there was apparent authority for their prohibited actions based on verbal assurances from the president of the company was defeated because the executives could not reasonably rely on such approval when their contracts required amendments to be in writing.
  • Big O Tires, LLC v. C&S Tires, Inc., 2017 U.S. District, Lexis 79939 (D. Colo. 2017) – obtained back royalties, trademark infringement damages, attorney fees and costs against former franchisee.
  • Midas International Corp. v. Poulah Investors, 2016 U.S. District, Lexis 117048 (D. Md. August 29, 2016) – obtained trademark infringement judgment against terminated franchisee as well as attorney fees and costs.
  • Electrology Laboratories, Inc. v. Kunze, 169 F.Supp.3d 1119, 2016 WL 943778 (D. Colo. 2016) – obtained $625,000 trademark infringement, false advertising and misappropriation of trade secrets judgment plus award of attorney fees and costs for purchasers of a business against the seller.
  • U2Logic, Inc. v. American Auto Shield, LLC, 2014 WL 4852094, *5 (D. Colo. 2014) – obtained partial summary judgment for copyright licensee in infringement case.
  • Muirfield Homeowners Association, Inv. v. Summit Investments, Inc., Colorado Court of Appeals 12 CA 2396 (2014) – obtained reversal of $300,000 jury verdict on negligence claim based on economic loss rule.
  • Cooper v. NCS Pearson, 733 F.3d. 1013 (10th Cir. 2013) – represented company president in claim against assignee-publisher for declaration regarding copyright ownership.
  • In Re Potts, 2013 Bankr. Lexis 4164 (Bankr. Colo. 2013) – successfully defended secured creditors against claim by another creditor that debt of bankrupt was a gift.
  • Holy Transfiguration Monastery v. Archbishop Gregory, 689 F.3d 29 (1st Cir. 2012) – defended Russian Orthodox monk against claims of copyright infringement.
  • Big O Tires, LLC v. Felix Bros., Inc., 2010 WL 2757367 (D. Colo. 2010) – defeated defendants’ motion to dismiss based on California statute voiding mandatory forum selection clauses in franchise agreements.
  • MRW, Inc. v. Big O Tires, LLC, 2009 WL 3368438 (E.D. Cal. 2009) – obtained summary judgment for franchisor on franchisee’s California unfair business practice claim.
  • Big O Tires, LLC v. JDV, LLC, 2008 WL 4787619 (D. Colo. 2008) – enforced covenant not to compete for franchisor.
  • Big O Tires, LLC v. Legacy Bank, ACB, 2008 WL 5095623 (W.D. Okla. 2008) – defeated motion to dismiss trademark infringement claim filed by purchaser of former franchised location.
  • Halle Properties, LLC v. Bassett and Big O Tires, Inc., 2007 WL 2344931 (C.D. Cal. 2007) – successfully defended franchisor against competitor’s claim of interference with contractual relations.
  • Bassett Seamless Guttering, Inc. v. GutterGuard, LLC, 501 F. Supp. 738 (M.D.N.C. 2007) – obtained settlement for distributor in territorial dispute with manufacturer and other distributor.
  • Rhino Linings USA, Inc. v. Rocky Mountain Rhino Lining, Inc., 62 P.3d 142 (Colo. 2003) – argued to the Colorado Supreme Court applicability of Colorado Consumer Protection Act to distributor relationship.
  • Big O Tires, Inc. v. Bigfoot 4×4, Inc., 167 F.Supp. 2d 1216 (D. Colo. 2001) – obtained preliminary injunction for trademark owner against “monster truck” company attempting to expand its trade channel.
  • I Can’t Believe it’s Yogurt v. Gunn, 1997 WL 599391 (D. Colo. 1997) – obtained permanent injunction for franchisor on franchisee’s post termination use of trademarks and trade dress. Enforced post termination covenant not to compete.
  • Grease Monkey International, Inc. v. Ralco Lubrication Services, Inc., 24 F.Supp.2d 120 (D.Mass. 1998) – covenant not to compete and royalty litigation with ex-franchisee for franchisor.
  • Mitel, Inc. v. Iqtel, Inc., 124 F.3d 1366 (10th Cir. 1997) – defeated copyright infringement claim of rival manufacturer based on functionality defense.
  • Haluska v. RAF financial Corp., 875 F.Supp. 825 (N.D.Ga. 1994) – compelled arbitration for securities brokerage firm.
  • Smith v. Denver Food Systems, Inc., 1994 WL 551561 (E.D. Pa. 1994) – defeated franchisee’s claims against franchisor brought by franchisee after previous arbitration.
  • Guiness PLC v. Ward, 955 F.2d 875 (4th Cir. 1992) – litigation involving enforcement of judgment obtained in the United Kingdom.
  • Shell Oil Co. v. Commercial Petroleum, 928 F. 2d 104 (4th Cir. 1991) – obtained trademark injunction for oil company against reseller of product outside authorized distribution system.
  • NBC Subsidiary (KCNC-TV), Inc. v. Broadcast Information Services, Inc., 717 F. Supp. 1449 (D. Colo. 1988) – obtained summary judgment for alleged copyright infringer on author’s claim for statutory damages and attorney fees.

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