patent

Protecting Jewelry Designs

Sales of Jewelry have been soaring over the past decade, with worldwide sales in 2016 totaling over US$300 billion dollars.  Helped by instant world-wide access provided by Social Media, many jewelry designers have found themselves on the short end of the stick when their designs are pilfered.  This article addresses various intellectual property tools that…

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Patenting an Incomplete Invention – Keep in Mind the Enablement Requirement

Sometimes it may be oversimplified to tell an inventor that his or her invention can be patented before it is complete, because this may cause the inventor to try to apply for patent too early.  While an inventor is not required to fully complete his or her invention before trying to apply for patent protection,…

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“The Slants” Win the Supreme Court Battle Against the Patent and Trademark Office

Seven years ago, the Asian-American Rock Band from Oregon started an application to register their name, “The Slants” as a Trademark. The USPTO, who didn’t seem to appreciate the irony of this name rejected the registration based on the Lanham Act. According to the national office, an Asian-American Band using “The Slants” to identify themselves…

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Importance of “Boilerplate” Terms in Contracts

The term “boilerplate” in contracts is often used to refer to miscellaneous terms and provisions, which don’t concern the main terms and conditions of the agreement.  For that reason, boilerplate provisions are often ignored or given short shrift by parties to contracts.  This is a mistake because boilerplate terms can be critical to resolution of…

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Beyonce Filed Application to Register Blue Ivy Carter's Name with USPTO

Beyoncé has filed an application to register her 5-year old daughter Blue Ivy Carter’s name with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) for use on everything from hair care to clothing, mobile devices and video games, among a number of other classes of goods. In 2012, shortly after Blue Ivy’s birth, Beyoncé and husband…

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Homemade Inventions Deserve Patents, Too

Some people still believe that patents can only be issued for exotic and high-tech inventions.  However, U.S. patent law does not require that a new device, product or process resemble something from a science fiction movie; a useful modification or improvement of an existing device may also be worthy of patent protection.  A patentable device…

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The DTSA

In the most consequential Intellectual Property development of 2016, the Federal government has enacted a brand new federal trade secrets law, known as Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA).  This means that now all four branches of Intellectual Property (Patent, Trademark, Copyright, and Trade Secrets) are protected under Federal law and can be brought in Federal…

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