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Trademark Office Announces Expedited Service for COVID-19 Products and Services


Today, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) announced a program to expedite service for trademark applications related to certain COVID-19 products and services. How Does It Work? As my regular readers will know, most trademark applications fall into the same queue and only in very specific circumstances can a trademark’s examination by the USPTO be expedited. However, today’s press release by the USPTO states that “in view of the critical need to develop medical products and services to combat the COVID-19 virus and move successful products to market as soon as possible,” they will accept petitions to move…

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Liability Considerations for Reopening Businesses


As I write this blog post, many states in the U.S. are in the process of partially reopening their economies while dealing with the coronavirus pandemic. Business owners who have taken a financial hit due to the shutdown need to also be thinking about liability when they reopen. If you own a business, one of your worst fears right now is finding out that one of your customers, clients, or employees came down with COVID-19 at your workplace. This is true if your business is a brick-and-mortar or if you or your team has any kind of face to face…

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Supreme Court Rules Willfulness Not Required for Award of Profits in Trademark Cases


A recent Supreme Court case just made trademarks much more valuable – and substantially increased the penalties for trademark infringement, even if the infringing party didn’t intend to rip off the trademark. Let’s say you discover that someone has infringed on your trademark. You bring the case to court and you prove that there was an infringement. You’ve spent a lot of time and money pursuing this case, and now you want to recover the profits that the infringer realized from their actions. What do you have to prove in order to be awarded those profits? More specifically: do you…

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What Can Business Owners Do?


These are challenging times for everyone, not least business owners. This is true regardless of the size and scope of your business. I’m not promising any easy solutions; beware of anyone who does. However, I am here to help any way I can. Over the last few weeks I’ve spoken with clients regarding: Interpreting¬†force majeure terms in contracts, including commercial leases. These clauses will continue to come into play as businesses evaluate their legal obligations, particularly businesses whose doors are temporarily shut due to government mandate. Business loans. The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering low-interest federal disaster loans for…

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