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Lawsuit seeks fees from former New Orleans franchise

Coldwell Banker alleges improper use of trademarks

Coldwell Banker Real Estate Corp. is suing a former New Orleans franchise to collect $818,500 the company claims it is owed for past dues and future fees. The former franchise cancelled its relationship with Coldwell Banker after Hurricane Katrina flooded its offices and now operates as Danette O'Neal Realtors Inc. Danette O'Neal, a longtime New Orleans real estate broker who had signed the franchise agreements with Coldwell Banker in 2004, is fighting back with public criticism of the lawsuit. "I understand business, but all of America knows of our plight in New Orleans. The actions that they have taken threaten not only my business, but my home, personal possessions and the future of my children," O'Neal stated in a news announcement this month that was published at several Web sites. "I just want to rebuild my company. I am still trying to restore my company ... but instead I must fight Coldwell Banker's threat to take away my legacy to collect 10 years of potential income." O'Neal...

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