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Questions Answered by Michael Gerity
1 Answer | Asked in Banking, Business Law, Civil Litigation and Contracts for Arizona on
Q: We are representing ourselves in a litigation case against a home servicing company.

We are at the stage of opposing side asking to dismiss. The judge denied their request 3 times, One of the approved was the Breach of Contract to include a few other charges. I now need to follow up doing a rebuttal I believe it is called to the ones that the apposing side has defended requesting... Read more »

Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Mar 16, 2018

Hello. I hate to say it, but this goes WAY beyond the kind of legal advice you should be seeking on an online question and answer forum. It's not really even clear whether you are the plaintiff or defendant, and it's nearly impossible to address issues relating to dismissal without a... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Arizona on
Q: What will happen to my estate should I die without a will
Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Mar 12, 2018

When a person dies in Arizona without a will, they are considered "intestate." The estate is then divided up according to a set of rules set by statute, with a hierarchy of who gets what based upon the familial relationship (wife, kids, grandkids, parents, siblings, etc). If married,... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Intellectual Property and Trademark for California on
Q: What is risk of trademark infringement if I file DBA for AKME and a company with trademark exists for ACME?

There are trademarks by both large tech company in unrelated industry, and also a trademark by company in the same industry selling similar products.

Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Mar 6, 2018

Short answer: yes. The rule for analyzing infringement is to first correct any spelling errors or unusual spellings before doing the analysis. So, for example, "shooze" would first be converted to "shoes," and "2legit" would be converted to "too legit."... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Business Formation and Business Law for Arizona on
Q: Dissolving my LLC

I have just received my LLC documents from legalzoom, i haven't signed any of them. Can i dissolve my llc without signing the documents because signing them is impossible, both my 2 other members live abroad. I did this mistake without knowing they must be US citizens. Can i dissolve my LLC... Read more »

Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Feb 9, 2018

Hello. You are experiencing first hand why these cut-rate online legal services are such a huge problem (and, I should add, how attorneys who do this kind of work often end up getting a fair amount of business trying to clean up all of the problems caused by these services.

Anyway,...
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2 Answers | Asked in Trademark for Texas on
Q: Im confused on whether my trademark is approved or if its still pending?
Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Feb 8, 2018

If you are talking about a federal trademark registration with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, understand that the process usually takes around a year or more. When you go to the USPTO website (www.USPTO.gov) you can search for your mark and it will show the status there. What you want to... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Trademark for Minnesota on
Q: We would like to use "Born to Sparkle!" on a shirt for a fundraiser. "Born to Sparkle" without the "!" is registered.

Would this be okay?

Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Feb 7, 2018

The pertinent question to ask when analyzing possible trademark infringement is whether or not there would be a reasonable likelihood of confusion between the two marks. So, ask yourself if leaving off the exclamation point would make it so a potential customer would not be confused that your... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Trademark for California on
Q: Hello My question is regarding foreign trademark...can foreign company sue if they have no US trademark?

I launched a business recently for a health product, I have been active on social media, etc. I only market to the US, Latin America and Canada. I am filing for a trademark with the USTPO. I got a message from some Nigerian company that sells a product with the same name in Nigeria. Apparently they... Read more »

Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Feb 7, 2018

The one thing you need to keep in mind is that, while registration is important, the rights to a trademark arise from the actual use of a mark in commerce in conjunction with particular goods and/or services. As such, you will need to be careful to determine whether or not they are using their... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Intellectual Property and Trademark on
Q: Trademark Infringement

Hi, i just received a infringement letter for selling bags similar to (kate-kid-sten). I brought them from Taobao and sell online. I sold about 30 bags over 2 years at the price of approx. $26 each bag. I call up and met with their lawyer and he told me I've to sign a undertaking and pay a... Read more »

Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Feb 7, 2018

That's a lot for the actual damages involved. What state are you in? I've handled a lot of IP infringement cases (on both the plaintiff's side and the defendant's), and we usually work out more favorable settlements than that.

***Please note the important disclaimers...
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1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Products Liability and Trademark for Tennessee on
Q: How can I stop a trademark that someone has made that isn’t theirs to trademark?
Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Feb 1, 2018

If a person has a legitimate basis for objecting to a trademark application filed by another, there are a couple of approaches that can be pursued. One is to contact the other applicant and attempt them to abandon the application based upon whatever basis there is for objection. Another is to... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Trademark on
Q: When is a Trademark official? Could someone get in trouble for using a Trademarked word before the registration date?
Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Jan 22, 2018

Understand that the actual rights to a trademark arise from the first actual USE of the mark in commerce in conjunction with goods and/or services. Registration then provides a large set of enhanced rights and options for enforcement, but it is the actual use that triggers the initial rights. As... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Trademark for North Carolina on
Q: What trademark classes do you recommend I register for my brand/trademark.

I want protection from others using it for any business. It's a name that will be focused on the marijuana industry with it's logo and brand on products such as clothing, glass, and other products and also online services.

Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Jan 22, 2018

With trademarks, the association between your mark and a PARTICULAR type of goods and/or services is a critical element. As such, you have to pick which particular goods and/or services you are going to use the mark with, and then actually use the mark in conjunction with the offering or sale of... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Trademark on
Q: I have problem with finding name for my project. So I wanted to know some stuff about how the trademark works. Thanks.

So, I'm starting some online projects and I wanted to know some thing. I personally think that trademark law is garbage 'couse it trademarks some usual and common things like "Orange Turtle" for example, and not some rare and original idea like "PewDiePie". F.E., I... Read more »

Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Jan 11, 2018

Sounds like you could use some clarification about how all this works.

First off, a trademark has no meaning, value or significance outside of the products and/or services with which it is used. You can't criticize, as one example, "Orange Turtle" as a possible trademark...
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1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Trademark for Pennsylvania on
Q: Hello. Would this logo be an infringement of our logo? https://trademarks.justia.com/873/79/mf-87379413.html

Many people are copying our company and we'd like to end the confusing likeness. Thank you.

Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Jan 6, 2018

Hello. You actually haven't provided what YOUR logo is, so it's impossible to compare the two.

1 Answer | Asked in Trademark for Massachusetts on
Q: If a Trademark is in 602-Abandoned status, can I apply for it?

602 Abandoned - Failure to respond

Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Dec 19, 2017

Hello. I've answered a very similar question on here before. First off, the primary issue with regard to using any trademark is as to HOW you use it. If somebody has a trademark that they use in conjunction with their sales of baked goods, and somebody else wants to use the same or similar... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Trademark for California on
Q: Hi. If I wish to use a trademarked product name for a different industry of products but they are somewhat correlated...

...am I at risk using that trademark? To be a little more specific, a trademark is owned for a phrase by a brewing company, but I intend to use that phrase for a line of hanging air fresheners that resemble beer hops

Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Dec 13, 2017

The standard that applies in all possible infringement analysis is always whether or not there is a reasonable likelihood of confusion as to the source of the goods and/or services. So, if consumers see air fresheners that resemble beer hops, is there a reasonable likelihood that they might be... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Trademark on
Q: What happened if I am using a dead trademark? Can the previous trademark owner claim any right to a dead trademark?
Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Dec 6, 2017

The rights to any particular trademark do not actually arise from registration, but from actual use of the mark in commerce in conjunction with the sale or offering of goods and/or services. As such, it is possible to hold valid rights to a trademark without ever registering the mark, or without... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Trademark for Mississippi on
Q: If a trademark says "ya filthy animal", can I use "you filthy animal"?
Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Dec 1, 2017

The question when comparing an existing trademark to a potentially infringing one is always this: is there a reasonable likelihood of confusion? So, if a consumer sees one mark, is it reasonably likely that they might believe it to come from the owner of the other mark? As part of this analysis,... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Trademark for Texas on
Q: How long is a registered trademark good for?
Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Nov 16, 2017

There are really two answers to this question (if we limit the discussion ONLY to federally registered marks, not ones registered with any state agency). First, there is the term of the trademark rights themselves, and then there is the term of the registration. The two are different. The rights... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Intellectual Property and Trademark for California on
Q: What does this mean in regards to a trademark: Status - Abandoned-Failure To Respond Or Late Response

Can people trademark phrases? If so, does this mean no one else but them are allowed to use these phrases to print items on such as shirts, etc?

Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Nov 16, 2017

IF you are talking about a federal registration with the USPTO, then an indication of abandonment for failure to respond usually means that an office action was issued and not responded to during the time for response. An office action is correspondence from the PTO raising a problem of some sort... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Trademark for West Virginia on
Q: Landshark is an abandoned trademark. Does that mean it can be used by the public?
Michael Gerity
Michael Gerity answered on Nov 9, 2017

First off, the primary issue with regard to using any trademark is as to HOW you use it. If somebody has a trademark that they use in conjunction with their sales of baked goods, and somebody else wants to use the same or similar mark with the sale of sailboats, the two marks are likely to be... Read more »

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