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Alexander Patton Montgomery

Alexander Montgomery’s Answers

58 total


  • As an apparel retailer, what types of copyright infringement issues might I run into?

    More specifically, I am a premium apparel printer. I have an online store which sells garments with high resolution 'celebrity' images printed on them. What I want to know is fairly simple. Will I get sued? What do I need to do to avoid being sued...

    Alexander’s Answer

    Your entire business model is based upon copyright infringement. This alone places substantial civil and criminal liability upon you and your business, not to mention the right of publicity violations. I would guess it is only a matter of time before you get a cease and desist letter.

    This is not a sustainable business model. Stop now and start over with an attorney.

    Alexander P. Montgomery
    www.cmrklaw.com

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  • Designed a graphic for a local clothing company/store. Was never paid for the design but they just recently printed it.

    Hi, I have provided a local store (a city themed gift shop) with a few shirt designs in the past and those transactions went fine. A few months ago, I was approached by them to do another design so I came up with a few concepts. There was a lack o...

    Alexander’s Answer

    I think Mr. Ballard is correct. The easiest (and cheapest) way to resolve this issue is to contact the store owner by yourself. You may be able to come up with a favorable resolution on your own.

    If the store owner refuses to cooperate, contact a copyright attorney. Unless you assigned your copyright through a work for hire or other writing (or were an employee - which doesn't seem to be the case), you still own the copyright in your designs. Profits related to the infringement are one of the remedies available to you under the Copyright Act. However, the viability of your claim, and the exact manner of moving forward, depends upon the specific facts of your situation (which you do not want to disclose on this public forum). A copyright attorney can help you identify the strength of your claim (if any) and discuss remedies available to you.

    If you are in the business of commercializing your creations, I strongly suggest looking into registering your copyrights with the U.S. Copyright Office. This registration carries a number of benefits, including statutory damages and the ability to bring an infringement suit. I've included more info below.

    Good luck,

    Alexander P. Montgomery
    www.cmrklaw.com

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  • What laws exist in the state of ohio regarding emailing employee social security numbers?

    This question is to protect me from liability when sending/receiving emails with personal information in them.

    Alexander’s Answer

    If you're storing this information on your servers, you should be aware of Ohio's Security Breach Notification Act (Ohio Revised Code 1349.19). Collecting an employee's name in combination with his or her social security number is considered "personal information" under that statute and places certain obligations upon the employer in the event the security protecting that data is breached. Typically, this involves quickly notifying all individuals affected. Penalties for failing to comply with the notification requirements can eventually reach $10,000/day, so it is important to understand the obligations placed upon you by the law.

    To best protect yourself and your business, it is important that you (1) make sure your computers and online storage are secure and encrypted, and (2) know what to do in the event of a data breach. An IT professional can help you with the former. An attorney can help you with the latter. I've included more information on this law in the links below.

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  • Is it legal for a father to interview his son for a position in the company?

    Two people go in for an interview for an open position in a company, person A meets all qualifications for the job, has past experience of 2 years or better and has no relation to any one in the interveiw process. Person B has lilltle qualificatio...

    Alexander’s Answer

    Business's have wide discretion as to who they hire. Therefore, unless the decision not to hire was due to the applicant's race, color, religion, sex, national origin, or age (if over 40), nothing illegal appears to have happened. It may not be a smart business decision to hire an unqualified family member over another qualified individual but, unless the hiring decision was based upon one of the factors I just listed, it is not illegal.

    Best of luck,

    Alexander Montgomery
    Cornetet, Meyer, Rush & Kirzner, Co, LPA
    Cincinnati, OH

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  • What is my legal right on seller of home not abiding our contract on repairs to an out building?

    I bought a house in New Franklin Oh. in September of this year. The seller, my Realtor & I drew up a contract on what needed to be done to the house for the agreement on the sale of the house. One of the items that was listed was 2 out building ga...

    Alexander’s Answer

    If the seller breached a provision of the contract, you may have a claim for damages. To determine if you have a claim, however, you will need to have an attorney review the language of the contract. An attorney can explain the contents of the contract to you, determine whether or not a breach has occurred, and your options for moving forward. Best of luck.

    Alexander Montgomery
    Cornetet, Meyer, Rush & Kirzner, Co., L.P.A.
    Cincinnati, OH

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  • Is it advisable to use an online legal document/advice company?

    I am thinking about using an online legal document/advice site and I'm wondering if these documents will hold up in a court of law? Is it advisable to use this kind of service in place of an actual attorney? Do they have any responsibility if so...

    Alexander’s Answer

    Not advisable. An attorney provides a service, not simply a document like the services you are considering. Not only will an attorney draft a document customized to your situation, but he or she can also provide valuable advice and guidance on what types of documents you may need, identify other legal concerns you may want to think about, and is available to answer any follow up questions you may have regarding the documents or services provided.

    Too often clients have come to me seeking to fix a problem caused by an online document or service. Often times, it's more expensive for me to fix the problem than it would have been for me to provide the service in the first place.

    Stick with real life, qualified attorneys. Not only are you purchasing a better service, but you are also purchasing a piece of mind knowing that an attorney drafted exactly the document you needed.

    Best of luck,

    Alexander Montgomery
    CMRK Law

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  • Looking for an attorney to do a basic copyright/trademark on a product.

    I distribute an assortment of earrings under a "name" that I would like to trademark so that we have exclusive rights to that name for our display of earrings.

    Alexander’s Answer

    A federal trademark registration certainly would maximize your legal protection in the use of your business name. I've attached a link to an article I wrote explaining some of these protections.

    Many attorneys here on Avvo, including myself, offer a free consultation to discuss the specifics of your application and the costs involved. Feel free to contact any of us.

    Alexander Montgomery
    Cornetet, Meyer, Rush & Kirzner, Co, LPA
    Cincinnati, OH
    amontgomery@cmrklaw.com

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  • If a company has camera and accuse you of steal and it don't show that you was steal what can you do.

    the employer told another employee that I was fried and I did not get anything in writing what can I do.

    Alexander’s Answer

    The default rule in Ohio is that every employment relationship is "at-will." This means an employer may terminate an employee at any time, with or without notice, for any reason as long as that reason is not unlawful. An unlawful reason would include termination due to race, color, national origin, religion, gender, age, disability, etc. An employee, in turn, may leave his or her employment at any time, with or without prior notice to the employer.

    Unless you had an employment contract, your employment was probably "at-will." Therefore, your employer could fire you at any time, whether you actually stole something or not. Further, termination based on a suspicion of stealing does not appear to be a basis for unlawful termination because, from the very brief facts presented, it does not seem to be based upon any of the above factors.

    If you feel you have been wrongfully discriminated against due to one of the factors listed above, you should contact an employment attorney. If not, however, it appears your termination was legal.

    Alexander Montgomery
    Cornetet, Meyer, Rush & Kirzner
    www.cmrklaw.com

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  • I signed a contract containing a non-compete clause. When the contract is over in a year, is the non-compete clause void too?

    Non-compete clause

    Alexander’s Answer

    Probably, but like my colleagues have stated, it really depends on what the contract says. Some provisions, especially those concerning confidentiality and trade secrets, are written to survive the expiration of the agreement in perpetuity. Other provisions, like a tolling provision that extends the non-compete clause if you are actually competing, may affect the duration of the agreement as well. Finally, if the duration of a non-compete agreement is deemed unreasonably long, it may be redrafted to account for a shorter time period.

    However, all these things depend upon the wording of the non-competition agreement, which you do not want to post in a public forum. Feel free to contact an attorney to review your agreement. Spending a little money to know the full extent of your agreement could save you thousands of dollars in potential litigation costs should you run afoul of the agreement in the future due to a misunderstanding of its provisions. I've linked an article below with more information on non-competition agreements in Ohio.

    Alexander Montgomery
    Cornetet, Meyer, Rush & Kirzner
    Cincinnati, OH
    amontgomery@cmrklaw.com

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  • Do I need a lawyer to create an employment contract, or is there a way to do it on my own?

    I just hired a couple of artists and designers, and I may need an employment contract. I recently started a company and we're very close to launching, but we're also very close to the end of our budget. Do I need to have my lawyer draw up the cont...

    Alexander’s Answer

    I have to agree with Mr. Beck and Mr. Rafter. There are too many individualized considerations that may not be and probably are not covered by a simple template. The drafter of the template probably hasn't accounted for every situation that may affect your business. For example, what if your artists and designers are actually considered independent contractors and your contract does not have a work-for-hire provision? Your company may not even own the work those workers create and could be subject to thousands of dollars in copyright infringement liability. Also, do you want your employees to be at-will or subject to a contract of a specific term of employment? An attorney will help you identify these situations and account for them in the contract.

    The money you spend on this contract is analogous to buying insurance. A relatively small amount of money now could save you thousands of dollars in the future. It will also give you a piece of mind and help you avoid unnecessary headaches. When you hire an attorney you're paying for a service, not simply a document you can download off the internet.

    Below I've attached a link to a site I contribute to that covers a variety of legal topics related to startups and existing businesses. It also lists the prices for various services. I hope it can help explain any further questions you may have. Good luck!

    Alexander Montgomery
    Cornetet, Meyer, Rush & Kirzner, Co., L.P.A.
    Cincinnati, OH 45246
    www.cmrklaw.com

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