Ohio Intellectual Property Questions & Answers

Q: I live in Ohio. Found misc property on road. No owner identifying info. Can I keep?

1 Answer | Asked in Intellectual Property for Ohio on
Answered on Apr 18, 2019
Sean Erin Serraguard's answer
In Ohio, so long as you cannot reasonably find the owner of said property AND you did not find it on a private road, it sounds like you'll be ok. This sounds like lost property under Ohio law. You're going to be obligated to make a good faith effort to find the true owner. Easiest way for you to do this is turn the object in question over to a local sheriff, explain where you found it, and let them try to find the owner. If you choose to hand it over to the sheriff, you should also ask the...

Q: Man's new partner writing children's book, using child's real name. Legal mother doesn't know. Is this legal?

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Intellectual Property for Ohio on
Answered on Apr 10, 2018
Joseph Jaap's answer
It isn't against a law. But the custodial parent might have a civil claim for invasion of privacy or unauthorized use of the child's name or likeness without permission. So the author is risking a lawsuit and should use the Find a Lawyer tab to consult a local attorney, or use a different name in the book.

Q: can I patent an ingredient in animal feed to prevent other feed companies from using it?

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Intellectual Property and Patents (Intellectual Property) for Ohio on
Answered on Mar 31, 2018
Kevin E. Flynn's answer
Starting in March of 2013, the rules for what could be patented changed. See https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/35/102

The relevant text is

A person shall be entitled to a patent unless—

(1) the claimed invention was patented, described in a printed publication, or in public use, on sale, or otherwise available to the public before the effective filing date of the claimed invention;

It is believed that the term sale is meant to be a public sale not a...

Q: My mother left me the intellectual property of her late husband a Grammy Award winner, in her will. How do I protect it

1 Answer | Asked in Intellectual Property for Ohio on
Answered on Mar 29, 2018
Andrew Zulieve Esq's answer
I suggest that you discuss the matter with an attorney with expertise in intellectual property law. She or he can advise you if copyright still subsists in each of the works and what rights, if any, exists in connection with the use of a deceased person's name. If there is good reason to believe that the copying and uses are unauthorized and therefore infringing the copyright(s), a cease and desist letter may be an appropriate next step. Any action in the U.S. alleging copyright infringement...

Q: What if you're recently 18 and left a bruise on your younger brother?

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Domestic Violence, Intellectual Property and Small Claims for Ohio on
Answered on Mar 23, 2018
Matthew Williams' answer
Well, you just confessed to domestic violence, a first degree misdemeanor punishable by up 180 days in jail and a fine up to $1,000. So there's that.

Q: I filed a LLC 8 ish months ago called Simple Shower Club LLC someone emailed me from simple shower saying its tm infring

1 Answer | Asked in Intellectual Property and Trademark for Ohio on
Answered on Jan 29, 2018
Joseph Jaap's answer
Use the Find a Lawyer tab to retain a local intellectual property or trademark attorney to review all the facts and advise you whether it could be an infringement or not, and what are your options. There are significant penalties for trademark infringement.

Q: Is a copyright on a Sound Recording valid if the entity registering the copyright never existed?

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Intellectual Property for Ohio on
Answered on Jan 17, 2018
Griffin Klema's answer
Yes, the copyright (i.e. the legal right, not the registration) should still be valid. A copyright registration which includes erroneous information can be corrected. Review the procedures under section 1800 of the copyright office Compendium.

Regarding ownership, a copyright is always initially owned by the creator, unless assigned. Generally, the registration itself doesn't change ownership.

Q: My eBay listing keeps getting removed because my "listing used their copyrighted image without permission."

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Antitrust, Business Law and Intellectual Property for Ohio on
Answered on Oct 7, 2017
Benton R Patterson III's answer
Try the Electronic Frontier Foundation. They sometimes take cases involving DMCA harassment pro bono.

Q: My insurance policy ended on 9th. Later on in the day when I realized I purchased different insurance from geico online

1 Answer | Asked in Insurance Defense, Intellectual Property and Consumer Law for Ohio on
Answered on Sep 13, 2017
Bruce Martin Broyles' answer
You need to obtain the electronic mail to and from Gieco to determine whether policy was in effect. In addition, your previous insurance company may have continued the policy of insurance for a short period of time after the cancellation for non-payment.

If you cannot obtain the email information, you may want to contact a computer forensics expert. The email would have left an exact date and time that the email was transmitted from your computer.

However, the on-line...

Q: I am entering a partnership with someone and need assistance on how to protect myself.

2 Answers | Asked in Business Formation, Contracts, Intellectual Property and Trademark for Ohio on
Answered on Aug 22, 2017
Joseph Jaap's answer
You are prudent to seek assistance for your business relationship and protection of your artwork - before you begin. Use the Find a Lawyer tab and contact a local business attorney who can advise you and answer questions about business formation and copyright protection.

Q: How can someone trademark fairy dust?

1 Answer | Asked in Intellectual Property and Trademark for Ohio on
Answered on Jul 26, 2017
Dr. Jamie Cuticchia's answer
A trademark is mark which is associated with goods or services. It originates from the use of specific insignia by silversmiths in England to differentiate their work from another.

In order to trademark "fairy dust, " first the mark cannot already be in use for the class of goods you would want the trademark for. You can file either as an "intent to use" or "used in commerce" status. Intent to use is basically filing the trademark paperwork before the mark is actually used in...

Q: Made a logo for business as a favor for a friend who worked there but is now gone. Can I order cease and desist

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Intellectual Property for Ohio on
Answered on Jun 28, 2017
Will Blackton's answer
You were not an employee of this company, so absent a written transfer of rights, you retain the copyright in your work. As to the rest of your questions, an attorney will need to review any communications between you and your friend or his former company to determine what your rights may be.

Q: is it copy right infringement if I change all of the words and numbers from college exams and profit of off it?

3 Answers | Asked in Copyright and Intellectual Property for Ohio on
Answered on Jun 7, 2017
Joseph Jaap's answer
It could be infringement. Access + similarity = infringement. If the professors have registered copyrights in those exams with the US Copyright Office, they can seek statutory damages for each item infringed. 17 US Code Section 504(C)(2): "In a case where the copyright owner sustains the burden of proving, and the court finds, that infringement was committed willfully, the court in its discretion may increase the award of statutory damages to a sum of not more than $150,000."

Q: friend came up with a slogan for a shirt, I created the design for it. I want to use it as my company name. Do I owe him

1 Answer | Asked in Business Law, Intellectual Property and Trademark for Ohio on
Answered on Jun 5, 2017
Joseph Jaap's answer
A slogan is usually too short for copyright protection, so must be protected as a trademark or service mark. That either requires registration with the state or being used in commerce. If he has not registered it or used it in business, then he probably could not succeed on a claim against you. But anyone can sue for almost anything. And even if he doesn't sue you, he might feel cheated. Use the Find a Lawyer tab to consult a local business attorney about starting your business and also...

Q: If my idea of invention is already patented by another individual yet not invented, what are my options? Thank You!

2 Answers | Asked in Copyright, Intellectual Property and Patents (Intellectual Property) for Ohio on
Answered on Dec 27, 2016
Joseph Jaap's answer
You can contact the patent owner and negotiate a license from the patent owner to produce the product or purchase the patent rights. Consult a local patent attorney.

Q: As a marketing intern at a brewery, after I left they're using my logo on EVERYTHING. Should I be asking them to pay me?

1 Answer | Asked in Intellectual Property for Ohio on
Answered on Feb 22, 2016
Matthew Williams' answer
Did you have a written contract with them for the internship? Did you design the logo during your internship? At work? Etc. It is fairly standard practice for companies to insert language in contracts which grants the company, not the individual, the rights to things the individual designs on the job. It is also fairly common for contracts to include a clause that say the contract is the only agreement between the parties and cannot be orally modified. How did you tell them the logo was...

Q: Is this considered fair use of a trademarked logo?

1 Answer | Asked in Intellectual Property for Ohio on
Answered on Aug 3, 2015
Matthew Williams' answer
Generally, this sort of thing is not a problem.Trademark laws are primarily concerned with situations where confusion concerning whose product is being purchased could result, i.e., where a customer could be mislead believing your product is the same or is backed by a more established company. It is always best to have permission, as even successfully defending a suit could be extremely costly. Also, you may want to discuss it with the publications that have reviewed your business as they often...

Q: Time warner sent me a letter saying they where going to give my name and address to the court for downloading .

1 Answer | Asked in Intellectual Property for Ohio on
Answered on Apr 15, 2011
Nathan Roach's answer
Unfortunately, these kind of cases are increasingly common. Depending on your situation, the EFF may be able to recommend a lawyer near you.


Often times, the subpoena notice from your ISP will give you an opportunity to contest the release of your information in a limited amount of time. Finding an attorney to respond quickly to block the release can prevent further disclosures and put your case in a better position for later...

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