The Intellectual Property Practice provides the Firm’s clients with broad and comprehensive services in the areas of domain name, copyright, trademark and trade secret law. When necessary, the Intellectual Property Practice also utilizes the services of attorneys in the Firm’s Litigation Department and Business Department.
The area of domain name law has recently become important. Congress is finalizing legislation to restrict the ability of cybersquatters to obtain valid trademarks of other companies. The Intellectual Property Practice has advised its clients on the issue of cybersquatting in particular, and the evolving law of domain name in general. Agreements between the domain name registrant and the service company also have been reviewed.
The Intellectual Property Practice advises clients on copyright laws to protect their ideas expressed in books, articles, journals, photographs and other media. The Practice also assists the copyright owner in preparing the copyright application. Questions of “joint ownership,” whether the matter was a “work for hire,” or whether the application comes under the “fair use” doctrine are also explored.
In the area of trademark law, the Intellectual Property Practice prosecutes applications for trademarks and service marks with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, and handles all inquiries from the trademark examiners. The Practice also prepares trademark applications for clients whose trademark or service mark has not yet been marketed under an “intent to use” application. Moreover, the Practice assists the client in protecting its marks from trademark infringement, or damage through sale of inferior or counterfeit goods.
With the assistance of the Litigation Department, the Intellectual Property Practice prosecutes or defends claims of trademark or copyright infringement, and related issues.
The Intellectual Property Practice also assists the Business Department in drafting employment agreements when issues of ownership of one’s work is at issue. The two practice groups work together in reviewing contracts for the sale or purchase of a business with intellectual property in order to best effectuate the protection or transfer of that property right for the client. Moreover, the Intellectual Property Practice reviews contracts, including license agreements, of the Firm’s business clients when issues of trade secret or intellectual property protection are raised.
The Practice has recently defended claims against a large store chain by a manufacturer for sale of counterfeit goods, and against a small business for copyright infringement where the issue of joint authorship was raised as a defense. Additionally, the Practice has affirmatively litigated claims on behalf of its clients for trademark and design patent infringement. Currently, the Intellectual Property Practice, in conjunction with the Litigation Department, is defending a matter in the Western District Court for the District of Pennsylvania for a large food service corporation regarding claims of trademark infringement and protection of trade secrets.