If your business works in the entertainment industry, the oil and gas industry, or certain other industries, you may become a party to a contract involving royalties. This article highlights what they are and how they work. When a person creates a book, song, play, or painting, the creator generally owns the intellectual property rights
Minneapolis Intellectual Property Attorneys
Thompson Hall Santi Cerny & Katkov’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.
Keeping Trade Secrets Confidential: Non-Disclosure Agreements
To show that particular information is a trade secret, a firm . . . must demonstrate that it is valuable, not known to others who might profit by its use, and has been handled by means reasonably designed to maintain secrecy. - U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, IDX Systems Corp. v. Epic
Patents Versus Trade Secrets
Let's say you or your company has come up with a blockbuster innovation and you're planning to market it. But you want legal protection so your invention won't be stolen. There are two primary ways to protect your potential moneymaker: A trade secret or a patent. Sometimes the choice is clear, but the decision often requires
Can You Trademark a Road Sign?
We are surrounded by road signs. They are on our way to work. They are next to our front yards. They are everywhere. So are company logos. They are on TV. They are on our products. They are also everywhere. But what happens when the line blurs between the two and company logos mimic road
Zerorez v. U.S. Olympic Committee – Memo in Opposition to Motion to Dismiss
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF MINNESOTA HSK LLC (d/b/a ZEROREZ) v. UNITED STATES OLYMPICS COMMITTEE Civil File No. 16-civ-02641 (WMW-KMM) Plaintiff HSK LLC (“Zerorez”) submits this memorandum of law in opposition to Defendant United States Olympics Committee’s (“USOC”) motion to dismiss. Zerorez opposes USOC’s Motion to Dismiss for lack of subject matter
Can You File Trademark Cases in State Court? Yes.
Trademark infringement lawsuits are usually brought in federal court, but the law does not prohibit such cases from being adjudicated in state court. Federal courts have original jurisdiction in trademark cases. 28 U.S. Code § 1338(b). However, federal courts do not have exclusive jurisdiction in federal courts. This was recently explained by a state district court
Copyright and Your Website
No matter what type of business you're in, you probably have a website. And you probably want to regularly put interesting content on your website in order to keep it fresh and appealing. Perhaps you develop your own copyrightable articles or images -- or hire someone else to do it. No matter how your website
Do You Need Patent, Trademark or Copyright Protection?
Your business has unique products or services. What type of intellectual property protection do you need to make sure that your competitive advantage is not exploited by others? It is important to understand whether you should file for a patent, a trademark, a copyright — or all three. While patents, trademarks and copyrights are all
Zerorez v. U.S. Olympic Committee – Lawsuit
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT DISTRICT OF MINNESOTA HSK LLC, d.b.a. ZEROREZ, Plaintiff, vs. United States Olympic Committee, Defendant. Court File No.0:16-cv-02641 HSK LLC v. United States Olympic Committee COMPLAINT Plaintiff HSK LLC, for its Complaint against Defendant United States Olympic Committee, states and alleges as
USOC Email to Minnesota Business Owner
From: Karissa Johnson Sent: Wednesday, July 20, 2016 6:20 AM To: [Name Redacted] <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: Trademark rules Hello, I am hoping to understand better the rules related to social media use of the term Olympics and related terms. I understand my business cannot have any Olympic-themed events or anything. But what I'm confused about is whether we can discuss
Zerorez v. U.S. Olympic Committee – A Social Media Free Speech Case
On August 4, 2016, JUX filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC) in U.S. District Court on behalf of Zerorez of Minnesota over the right to talk about the Olympics on social media. Case: HSK LLC, d.b.a. ZEROREZ v. United States Olympic Committee Court file number: 0:16-cv-02641 HSK LLC v. United States Olympic Committee
Copyrights: Online Content Best Practices
Copyright protects original works of authorship, including literary works (which includes computer programs), dramatic, musical (including lyrics), artistic (including pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works), motion pictures and other audiovisual works, sound recordings, architectural works, compilations, collective works, and derivative works. A copyright gives its owner the exclusive right to reproduce the work, sell or distribute the work, make derivatives based upon it,
Quick Definition: USPTO “Use-In-Commerce” Application
What is a “use-in-commerce” application with the USPTO? A “use-in-commerce” basis occurs when the trademark is being used in the sale or transport of goods, or the rendering of services in “interstate” commerce between more than one state. For services, the mark must be used in the sale or advertising of the services. For more information
Unfair Competition Law in Minnesota
Unfair competition is a general category of torts recognized by Minnesota courts to protect commercial interests. n Unfair competition can include tortious interference with contract, improper use of trade secrets, and an employee's breach of a duty of loyalty to his or her employer. Unfair competition can also be infringement of a trade name. These torts establish
Uniform Trade Secrets Act in Minnesota
Under common law, the key issue in a trade secret case was whether there was intent to keep information secret. This changed when Minnesota became the first state to adopt the Uniform Trade Secrets Act in 1980, after the Uniform Law Commission approved the Act in 1979. The Uniform Trade Secrets Act (the “Act”) is
End-User License Agreements (EULA): Key Terms, Conditions, & Tips
If your business produces any software or has a website, you need an enforceable agreement with end users in order to protect business intellectual property and limit potential liability. Often times these agreements are referred to as End User License Agreements or EULAs. In recent years, courts have become more comfortable enforcing EULAs however, enforceability
Social Media, Technology, and Employees: Crafting Effective Legal Policy
Businesses across Minnesota are struggling to define the boundaries of appropriate employee use of social media and to what extent the employer has a role in monitoring and managing such social media use. In addition to concerns about employee productivity, the sophisticated electronic communication tools available to employees create new challenges for businesses including potential
Patents: The Six Most Frequently Asked Questions
Innovation, invention, and the process of translating ideas into products and services has been, and remains, a major factor in Minnesota's economic growth. Indeed, in today's world that process has even greater importance in light of national productivity and international competitiveness. The below frequently asked questions are an introduction for inventors and entrepreneurs on how
How to Trademark a Series of Books, Movies, or Other Artistic Works
How do you trademark the title of a book series, movie series, or other artistic works? This is a question authors and artists often ask. Fortunately, the United States Trademark Office allows you to trademark a series of books, movies, or related titles of other artistic works. The United States Trademark Office explains the answer:
Business Names and Trademarks
Difference Between a Business Name and a Trademark I often get asked by clients who are starting businesses, “why do I need to trademark my business name? I already look through the Minnesota Secretary of State’s website and no one in the state has my business name.” However, merely clearing a name with the Secretary