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Andrew Kevin Jacobson

Andrew Jacobson’s Answers

940 total


  • If a company files for Chapter 7, can I use their books to start my own similar business?

    I am starting a business and don't want to run into copyright challenges.

    Andrew’s Answer

    The books of the debtor company belong to
    The company. The have value (of some type) and would have to be bought from the trustee. However, the books don't don't give title to
    The assets which have tone bought from thy estate as well.
    You need good bankruptcy advice asthis is too complex forbeginners

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  • Graphic design and branding agency

    I own a graphics design and branding agency. We work with small to medium sized businesses in regard to their logo, website, landing page, designs. In addition we work with them to create creative names for their company. We do not provide a logo ...

    Andrew’s Answer

    An indemnity agreement (in which the customer agrees to pay to defend your firm if there were a trademark infringement lawsuit) in your standard agreement would be a good idea. A lawyer in the LA area can help you draft it.
    Further, you might be surprised about how easy a name trademark search is to do. Do a free trademark search on the USPTO's TESS and look at each of the results to make sure the mark hasn't already been registered. Also, a Google search can be done for free, and is far better than the databases we had available in the early 1990s. As for non-word logos, they can be searched fairly cheaply with a good trademark research site like Saegis (see link below).

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  • Can a designer use my TM'd company name/logo on mockup signs/graphics and put them on an online portfolio without my approval?

    I've noticed a designer used my Trademarked company name and logo to create mockup signage and graphics and placed them on a popular online platform where designers put their work. I've reached out and asked for the content to be removed, but he i...

    Andrew’s Answer

    "Fair Use" is technically not a trademark exception -- it is only for copyright, and you have a trademark. There is a very similar defense called "nominative fair use" wherein a mark can be used for comparison, general information (e.g., "turn left at Whole Foods" doesn't infringe Whole Foods' trademark, because the use isn't for competitive purposes.
    You have identified the correct concerns -- people may feel that your firm has endorsed his work by having used it, when that is not the case. You might want to consult with a local lawyer about a cease-and-desist letter.

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  • Are disbarred lawyers allowed to maintain their website and social media accounts as if they're still active?

    For example, if "John" was recently disbarred for misappropriation, misrepresentation, and failure to account clients' trust account and to pay client; can his firm still remain open? This lawyer still has an active website and social media accoun...

    Andrew’s Answer

    The California State Bar takes the unauthorized practice of law very seriously. If the disbarred attorney is providing while not authorized, the former attorney can get into a lot of trouble -- including criminal penalties. Use the link below to make a complaint.
    One thing I should mention -- attorney discipline has specific meanings; an attorney can be suspended from practice without actually being stricken permanently from the rolls of attorneys -- that would be "disbarred."

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  • Patent App Technology

    We are in the process of creating an App, this app includes features that already exist within other apps in the market; but the way we are applying these features is unique and has not been done. I am the president of an App Development Company a...

    Andrew’s Answer

    Only qualified patent counsel can advise you on this, after reviewing your product and the competitors' product, but I wonder how much is "novel" if the basic features are already being used. If the features are already in other works, they should be checked to make sure the features themselves aren't patented -- which could prevent you from using the feature without a license.
    Also, crowdfunding is suspect here -- the "crowd" is going to want to know what it is funding, but if you disclose it on the crowdfunding website, you could be giving up rights. You really need to check with good intellectual property counsel about your specific circumstances before you do anything more.

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  • If I want to be a talent manager, a guy who connects people to business's for various jobs.

    If I want to be a talent manager, a guy who connects people to business's for various jobs do you believe i need a actual company legally? And i get a % off the jobs pay. Meaning modeling gigs, music video gigs, etc.

    Andrew’s Answer

    Your business does not have to be a separate entity like a corporation or LLC, but in California it is vital that you get licensed as a talent agency, even if it is just you. See the attached link for details.

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  • Today I received a notice in the mail from amazon stating that they are being sued for patent infringement on a product I sold.

    they are asking me to indemnify them stating I agreed to do so in the seller agreement. I sold a total of 5 units which totaled about $50 in sales. They are asking me to foot their legal bill for my portion of the fees. Can they really hold me lia...

    Andrew’s Answer

    Assuming that Amazon is correct in recounting what is in the agreement (and since Amazon wrote it, I strongly assume that Amazon protected itself). then yes, Amazon could require that. If you have business liability insurance (I hope so), contact your insurer. If you don't have business liability insurance, you need to consult with a lawyer as soon as possible. A lawyer may be able to resolve this quickly. I know lawyers are expensive, but they can help keep the cost down.

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  • Do I need a patent or trademark for a company brand. I am bringing rice from overseas under a new company name. The company

    has already been trademarked in the UK and I needed to now trademark it here in the US. What is the process for that and cost estimate and timeline?

    Andrew’s Answer

    Here's the good news -- as long as you are not infringing on the rights of another trademark holder, your existing trademark is already protected under American law, even without registration.
    However, it is a good idea for you to register your trademark. There is a application fee of $300-$400 per class of good, and you'll need a lawyer with trademark experience to guide you through the process, which might cost $1000-$3000 more, depending on the issues involved. I usually suggest to clients that the register only after they have a positive cash flow and can afford the expense, but until then, keep all possible records showing sales of your trademarked product in the United States for use during the registration process.

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  • Selling business but want to keep/transfer trademarks

    I have three trademarks registered under an LLC that I own. I am looking to sell the LLC but want to keep the trademarks as they are unrelated to the operations of the business. How do I transfer ownership of these marks?

    Andrew’s Answer

    There are multiple ways of doing it, depending on what is best for you and the LLC. Consulting with an intellectual property lawyer would be a good idea. Avvo's "Find a Lawyer" function can help you find one in the San Diego area.

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  • Add on to: Is my product protected by intellectual property laws?

    I take back that this was a product "idea," but in fact an actual product I had manufactured and was trying to sell to them at wholesale for them to re-sell. Also, I can't categorize this as an "unsolicited product Idea," since prior to me sending...

    Andrew’s Answer

    Did you have a non-disclosure agreement with the reseller, wherein the reseller promises not to make, reverse engineer, etc. the product? The central question here is whether there was a duty on the part of the reseller not to profit from this idea. You have not mentioned any patents or patent rights (which might provide some protection for your product), which might provide you with the right to prevent the reseller from manufacturing and selling a competing product. In the absence of patent protection, the only way to create a duty not to create a competing product is with a signed non-disclosure agreement ("NDA"), and that hasn't been mentioned here. You need to consult with a lawyer who knows this area and can talk to you confidentially, but based upon the above, I don't see a duty on the part of reseller not to market a competing product.

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