Intellectual Property Questions & Answers

Q: I have recently been filling job applications on indeed. After awhile I was emailed by a guy named Keith for a job

1 Answer | Asked in Intellectual Property, Bankruptcy, Employment Law and Workers' Compensation for Georgia on
Answered on Dec 10, 2017

In short, you have been cheated both by cyber as well as banking law. Immediately report the matter to your local police post with all details so that guy does not cheat more persons with much more money.

Then consult Attorney of your local jurisdiction and explain the whole story with hard copies for specific assistance.
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Q: What are some ways I can check on the legal rights I have to a potential name for a developing small business?

1 Answer | Asked in Business Law, Copyright and Intellectual Property for Montana on
Answered on Dec 8, 2017

Short phrases and names are generally not protected by copyright law. What you're probably thinking of is trademark infringement - the key question being, will your name confuse consumers, that is, might consumers believe that your company is affiliated with or endorsed by E. B. White, Harper & Brothers, Hanna-Barbera Productions, Universal, or any of the other entities involved with a production of Charlotte's Web who may retain rights in that name.

Is it impossible to use the name?...
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Q: i want to use my name as my website for my music. someone else owns it but not using it. i reached out to them, but...

1 Answer | Asked in Business Formation, Business Law, Copyright and Intellectual Property for New York on
Answered on Dec 2, 2017

You can usually almost always use your name if it is your own name.
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Q: With a Provisional Patent; What are next steps to keep secure while shopping invention?

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Intellectual Property and Patents for Maryland on
Answered on Nov 28, 2017

You need to get connected with an attorney that has been down this road many times before. You will need a non-disclosure/non-use agreement that is used with folks that are given access to your design.

To the extent that you work with vendors to improve your design, the paperwork needs to be clear that their improvements flow to you without additional compensation as you are already paying them to be smart.

Each state has an organization that helps small businesses that is...
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Q: I was recently layed off from my employer and I have been asked to sign a severance agreement but have an issue, below.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Intellectual Property for Minnesota on
Answered on Nov 28, 2017

Under Intellectual Property Law, you can hold ownership rights of your master project work.

Your question being incomplete and does not detail terms of your agreement/arrangement with your employer who sponsored/paid your Master programme, hence, on exit asking surrender of ownership of your project work.

To render a specific advice, please share your agreement with employer.
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Q: Can I use Albert Einstein's name and picture in a math game I'm making?

1 Answer | Asked in Products Liability, Civil Litigation, Gaming and Intellectual Property for California on
Answered on Nov 27, 2017

Albert Einstein's image has been established as a protectable property. It is likely that a license would be required. The cost may fit within your margins and may make the game more desirable. One prudent course is to engage an attorney to contact the rights proprietor.
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Q: If Court Clerk entered Default should Defendant not respond ?

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Intellectual Property for New York on
Answered on Nov 27, 2017

You say you "filed Default" so I assume you are the plaintiff in this case. If, instead, a default judgment has been entered against you, you should contact a lawyer in the state the judgment was entered immediately to determine your options.

Generally, obtaining a default judgment means you won your case without the defendant filing a response. A defendant can still challenge a default judgment and move to have it set aside. This can happen, for example, if you attempted to serve...
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Q: Can I copyright an image that includes lettering/fonts within the design? Also, what if a design includes basic shapes?

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Intellectual Property for Texas on
Answered on Nov 20, 2017

Basic design elements are protected by copyright as part of broader designs. Although, you cannot prevent someone else from using basic design elements (fonts, letter, shapes) by using them in your own copyright protected work.
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Q: I have an idea for an app but no app developing skills. need to hire someone how should i keep them from stealing

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Intellectual Property on
Answered on Nov 20, 2017

The contract between you and the person who creates your app, defines who owns the underlying intellectual property. Absent a contract, if you’ve only supplied an idea, the person who did the actual coding has the best claim to the copyright for that work. A court may, however, determine that the code for the app was jointly authored and thus, jointly owned.

Many valuable copyrighted works result from creative collaborations. U.S. copyright law allows for two or more parties to own...
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Q: i have an app idea but no skills to develop. how do i safely hire someone to do it for me and prevent theft

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Criminal Law and Intellectual Property on
Answered on Nov 20, 2017

Answer: The contract between you and the person who creates your app, defines who owns the underlying intellectual property. Absent a contract, if you’ve only supplied an idea, the person who did the actual coding has the best claim to the copyright for that work. A court may, however, determine that the code for the app was jointly authored and thus, jointly owned.

Many valuable copyrighted works result from creative collaborations. U.S. copyright law allows for two or more...
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Q: If I design a bikini or a set of lingere to sell, do i need to patent the design? If not do I need to copyright?

2 Answers | Asked in Copyright, Intellectual Property and Patents on
Answered on Nov 18, 2017

You are not required to to have a design patent in order to sell a product. Some companies like Oakley, Inc. elect to take the extra step to get design patents on iconic products to ward off people seeking to sell confusingly similar sunglasses. (Knock-offs). See https://assignment.uspto.gov/patent/index.html#/patent/search/result?id=Oakley,%20Inc.&type=patAssigneeName

Many people have acquired design patents for bikini components....
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Q: I want to file an international patent; what are specific procedures and requirements?

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Intellectual Property, International Law and Patents for Maryland on
Answered on Nov 18, 2017

There is not really an international patent. There is a process to file a patent application which serves as the front end for the patent application systems for 152 countries or regions http://www.wipo.int/pct/en/pct_contracting_states.html. This is a Patent Cooperation Treaty Application (PCT). People sometimes call this an international patent but that is not accurate.

You can file a utility application here in the US and then file your PCT application within 12 months of that...
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Q: When filing an patent; what are specific differences relating to an improvement on an invention vs. an invention?

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Intellectual Property and Patents for Maryland on
Answered on Nov 18, 2017

Great question.

Here are some points to consider.

1) It is extremely rare that someone submits a patent application for the first x (first transistor, first airplane, first telephone). We remember those folks as they are few and far between. Most patent applications are filed on improvements.

2) When you are the first to file a patent on X-- then you tend to get broader protection and have a stronger patent than someone filing the 100th patent on an improvement to X....
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Q: My deceased dads ex girlfriend has all his stuff.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Intellectual Property and Probate for Florida on
Answered on Nov 17, 2017

Sure; if you file a probate case you can sue her for the stuff.
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Q: How are cyber claims - as pertaining to HIPAA / PCI - filed and prosecuted in Florida?

1 Answer | Asked in Health Care Law and Intellectual Property for Florida on
Answered on Nov 17, 2017

A violation of the federal HIPAA regulations (health care providers divulging certain personal medical information) is not a crime, nor is it a violation of Florida law. The health care provider can perhaps be subject to sanctions by a specific federal agency, but it is not a court case.
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Q: What does this mean in regards to a trademark: Status - Abandoned-Failure To Respond Or Late Response

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Intellectual Property and Trademark for California on
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 with the application. Usually, you have six months to respond to the office action to address the problems, though the response deadline can be cut down dramatically in some cases. Some problems are...
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Q: I have a very marketable product idea but I'm reluctant to bring any attention to it.

2 Answers | Asked in Contracts, Intellectual Property and Patents for Texas on
Answered on Nov 16, 2017

This is a common fear. Unfortunately, if you never tell anyone about the idea it will be hard to move forward.

If you product has new features not found in other products, then you may be able to protect the idea with a patent application. Once you have a patent application on file, then you can share the idea. Ideally under a non-disclosure agreement drafted by an attorney working for you -- be wary of forms on the internet. Note -- the patent application may not protect further...
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Q: Can a patent owner request that i send them all of my products they consider to be a counterfeit?

2 Answers | Asked in Consumer Law, Copyright, Intellectual Property and Patents for Florida on
Answered on Nov 15, 2017

I have seen a patent case that was awarded less than a dollar in damages as they wanted to make a point in a bigger set of battles.

As a practical matter, if you can show that you shipped them back to your supplier for a refund, then it is unlikely that they will chase you. We do not know whether they have similar patent rights in China or wherever your supplier is located.

If they have a design patent (number starts with a D) they can seek disgorgement of all profits you...
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Q: Copyright troll lawsuit was voluntarily dismissed without prejudice. Can I start deleting files off my hard drive now?

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Intellectual Property for Colorado on
Answered on Nov 15, 2017

Probably so, but it would be best have an attorney review what you received from the copyright owner's attorney. A dismissal without prejudice means that the suit may be filed again.
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Q: Anyway around a trade mark? They are out of state and in a relevant field but slightly different. Thanks for your time.

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Intellectual Property for Indiana on
Answered on Nov 15, 2017

It is certainly possible to license the right to use another company's trademark or purchase it outright from them. Trademark transactions are fairly common. I recommend speaking with a trademark attorney on how to approach the other company and working out a licensing arrangement that works for your business.
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