Under the Lanham Act, the term “trademark” includes, [A]ny word, name, symbol, or device, or any combination thereof— used by a person, or which a person has a bona fide intention to use in commerce and applies to register on the principal register established by this chapter, to identify and distinguish his or her goods,... Read More →
Minneapolis Intellectual Property Attorneys
Thompson Hall Santi Cerny & Dooley‘s attorneys have been representing clients in the area of intellectual property for years. The most common forms of intellectual property involve:
- trade secrets
- internet domain names
- licensing issues
Thompson Hall Santi Cerny & Dooley has represented clients with both proactive and reactive efforts. Our attorneys represent individuals and businesses from the start of new ventures or projects to prevent violations of intellectual property laws. Thompson Hall Santi Cerny & Dooley‘s attorneys represent clients in identifying, acquiring, and protecting their intellectual property. Our attorneys also represent individuals and businesses in litigation once there has been a violation, or an alleged violation, of an intellectual property law.
Important considerations in protecting yourself or your business
Contracts to protect your intellectual property
Contracts, confidentiality agreements, and non-disclosure agreements drafted by experienced attorneys will help protect your intellectual property before it is disclosed to others, such as employees. Non-competition agreements may also be useful in this area.
Licensing of the use of your intellectual property
You may wish to license another person or entity to use your intellectual property. An experienced attorney will help protect your rights by drafting a thorough licensing agreement.
Before acquiring a trademark a search must be conducted to determine whether that trademark is already in use. Experienced attorneys can guide you through this process.
Trademark and copyright registration
Registration of trademarks and copyrights is not necessary but experienced attorneys will show you the benefits of registration and register trademarks and copyrights on your behalf.
Negotiating potential violations
When someone believes a violation of an intellectual property law has occurred, or may have violated such a law himself or herself, often the person does not want to engage in extensive litigation over the matter. Our attorneys are experienced negotiators and help intellectual property clients negotiate their claims or defenses in order to achieve positive results. Often clients want to explore the option of settling violations before proceeding through litigation.
Mediating or arbitrating potential violations
When parties want to explore settlement or other results short of trial, but are unable to resolve the matter themselves or through their attorneys, often they will seek mediation or arbitration. Thompson Hall Santi Cerny & Dooley‘s attorneys are experienced in mediation and arbitration and help clients obtain the results they seek through these processes when clients wish to explore alternatives other than trials.
Determining violations and litigating claims and defenses
Once there has been a potential violation of an intellectual property law and settlement negotiations are either undesirable or unproductive, litigation often ensues. The attorneys of Thompson Hall Santi Cerny & Dooley are also experienced litigators and will initiate lawsuits, conduct discovery, litigate motions, and represent clients in trial after there has been a potential violation of an intellectual property law.
The notion of fair use is something that every person or party with a trademark or copyright should be aware of. While having a trademark and a copyright exists to provide protection so the person who owns that trademark or copyright can protect it, there are instances where a third party may use the trademark... Read More →
The short answer is “yes.” Recently, the Washington Redskins were notified that their trademark has been canceled by the U.S. Patent Office. In a rare ruling from the U.S. Patent Office it canceled six different trademarks containing the word “Redskin” because the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board wrote in a 2-1 decision “that these... Read More →
If you are like most companies in the Information Age, your confidential information is critical to your competitive advantage.
What is Your Company's Confidential Information? Each company has its own confidential information, often called "trade secrets." For you, this might be client data, prospect databases, client files, formulas, recipes, or processes that give you an advantage over your competitors.
I was recently asked this question: Question: Is it worth hiring an attorney to do a trademark registration, or should I save money and try to do it myself? There are a lot of legal tasks you might want to do yourself to save money, but this is not one of them. Trademark registration is... Read More →
Introduction to Trademarks and the Internet Trademark rights are effectively regional in nature. That is, one can only assert his or her rights against another using a same or similar trademark (or “mark”) likely to cause consumer confusion. Traditionally, consumer confusion resulted from mor e than one company using similar marks within the same geographical... Read More →
A person obtains a trademark by being the first to use it in commerce on a good or service. It must be something that may be validly trademarked. Descriptive marks and generic marks generally may not be trademarked. Obtaining a trademark gives a person exclusive use of that mark. A trademark need not be registered,... Read More →
Why You Need a Solid Written Agreement with Your Partners: The Unfortunate Tale of Stone Temple Pilots You Control Intellectual Property Your Company Creates by a Written Partnership Agreement The current legal battle among members of the Stone Temple Pilots may evolve into an excellent example of how to avoid common mistakes that business owners... Read More →
Copyrights protect creative works. A copyright gives the owner of the copyright exclusive rights to reproduce, distribute, perform, or display the copyrighted work. A copyright also gives the owner of the copyright the exclusive rights to create a derivative work. A derivative work is a work that is based on the copyrighted work. Creative works... Read More →
All businesses engage in some type of marketing. Marketing often comes in the form of advertising: in newspapers, on television, on a website, on the side of a bus or billboard, etc. However, sometimes the marketing is as simple as placing the businesses name or logo on the goods they are selling. Purchasing decisions are... Read More →
R & D Film 1, LLC files Copyright Infringement Lawsuit against 41 John Does in Western District of Washington
On January 8, 2013, R&D Film 1, LLC filed a two-count Complaint attempting to allege Direct Copyright Infringement and Contributory Copyright Infringement involving the motion picture "the Divide" against 41 John Doe Defendants. The case is pending in the United States District Court for the Western District Court of Washington and has been assigned case... Read More →
Zambezia Film Ltd. files Copyright Infringement Lawsuit against 51 John Does in Western District of Washington
On March 5, 2013, Zambezia Film Ltd. filed a two-count Amended Complaint attempting to allege Direct Copyright Infringement and Contributory Copyright Infringement involving the motion picture "Adventures in Zambezia" against 51 John Doe Defendants. The case is pending in the United States District Court for the Western District Court of Washington and has been assigned... Read More →
On January 12, 2012 the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) began accepting applications for registration of new generic top level domain (gTLD) names. Top level domain (TLD) is the character string to the right of the period following the domain name, for example, ".gov." The applications for gTLDs were accepted until May... Read More →
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that the producers of the hit play, Jersey Boys, chronicling the rise to stardom of the musical act, “The Four Seasons,” did not infringe upon the rights of the copyright owner to The Ed Sullivan Show. SOFA Entertainment, Inc. v. Dodger Productions, Inc. and Dodgers Theatricals,... Read More →
Along with the previously discussed alternatives for avoiding or limiting liability for infringement (see discussion of licensing in this post on Safe Harbors for On-Line Service Providers) there is the doctrine of fair use.
Internet service providers (“ISPs”) provide their subscribers with online Internet access. This raises the question of whether the ISP or the individual subscriber is liable for potential copyright infringement.
The exclusive rights held by the copyright owner can be licensed to other parties. This license provides the user with permission to use the copyrighted work without infringing the copyright. Therefore, it is essential that any on-line business that makes considerable use of ...
Although there have been many recent attempts to increase copyright protection for databases in the United States, Congress has yet to find a solution that would allow protection beyond the mere selection and arrangement of the work without providing the copyright owner with a monopoly in the information contained in the database.
A Florida court found no copyright infringement when a competitor website used an Internet “spider’’ software program to extract and copy information from a competitor’s website. The court determined that the extraction of what were deemed facts and their copying constituted fair use.
If you transmit images via the Internet or allow for such transmission, you may also be considered a publisher of copyrighted material. As noted above, many different types of materials may be protected by copyright, including audiovisual works, musical compositions, sound recordings, visual art, photographs, graphics...