I am looking to create a business page on Facebook for dentists in Los Angeles. The purpose of this page will be educational in nature. By that there would be posts about teeth whitening, braces, flossing, tooth decay etc... I am not a dentist by profession. On the website and on Facebook I would have a disclaimer saying that I am not a dentist nor am I affiliated with a professional organization. This business Facebook page would be linked to another website that I have which also educates about dentistry. The concept around this idea is build a following on Facebook to drive traffic to my website. Then solicit advertising from dentists in the local area. I would give them a plaque that they can put in their office saying that they are featured on Los Angeles Dentist page. legal issues?
I've answered this same question about 5 times in the past few months. Try doing a search on this site for dentist sites. And then see a business lawyer to discuss, copyright, trademark, domain name, FTC restrictions and false advertising, disclaimer, disclosure, entity formation, etc.
Avvo doesn't pay us for these responses, and I'm not your lawyer just because I answer this question or respond to any follow-up comments. If you want to hire me, please contact me. Otherwise, please don't expect a further response. We need an actual written agreement to form an attorney-client relationship. I'm only licensed in CA and you shouldn't rely on this answer, since each state has different laws, each situation is fact specific, and it's impossible to evaluate a legal problem without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue.
Intellectual Property Law Attorney
That's funny, giving plaque to dentists.
Yes, lots of business issues, including: what business attorney to see to tell you the issues. What business structure you need. What business name and how to clear and protect it (you proposed a generic term); What disclaimers you need and how to effectively make them; what IP lawyer to use; what licenses you need and from whom and by when; copyright infringement issues for the content you will use; trademark issues.
The business issues are even more daunting, as few dentists will choose to advertise in that way, since it's totally meaningless and no indication of credentials or quality at all. Seems equivalent, but less meaningful, than a dentist advertising "featured in the yellow pages" or "featured in the LA Times classified section."
Good Luck. I think you will need lots of determination to have a chance to make anything from this business model.Getting a solid legal foundation would be a good start.
I am not your lawyer and you are not my client. Free advice here is without recourse and any reliance thereupon is at your sole risk. This is done without compensation as a free public service. I am licensed in IL, MO, TX and I am a Reg. Pat. Atty. so advice in any other jurisdiction is strictly general advice and should be confirmed with an attorney licensed in that jurisdiction.
If you are asking whether your business modsel posses any issues it is hard to say. Obviously, you cannot offer specifc dental/medical advice as you are not a licensed dentist. But a content driven format that offers general info is not on its fact a problem. A lot will depend on how it is all presented.
It is probably a good idea to discuss your objectives over with a lawyer in more detail. Most of us here, including myself, offer a free phone consult.
The law firm of Natoli-Lapin, LLC (Home of Lantern Legal Services) offers our flat-rate legal services in the areas of business law and intellectual property to entrepreneurs, small-to-medium size businesses, independent inventors and artists across the nation and abroad. Feel free to call for a free phone consultation; your inquiries are always welcome: CONTACT: 866-871-8655 Support@LanternLegal.com DISCLAIMER: this is not intended to be specific legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. No attorney-client relationship is formed on the basis of this posting.
Are You Planning on Opening a New E-Commerce Website?
There is much you need to know as you begin your new business.
Below is a checklist for legal issues I use for new e-commerce clients.
1. Business entity - Are you going to be a C corp, an LLC or a sole proprietorship?
2. Terms of Service - This is your contract with your visitors and is the most important item for any e-commerce site. A little work here brings big dividends in the future.
4. FTC guidlines - The FTC has been regulating business advertising for almost a century. All of their advertising guidlines apply to e-commerce sites.
5. Domain Name issues? Is your name available. Can you create a Trademark?
6. Trademark - Do you have a brand name free from conflict? Should you start with just common law rights? Should you register the mark, and when?
7. Copyright - If it is on the web, it already belongs to somebody. Did you buy a license for the images you are using? Do you have a DMCA notice on your web site?
8. Do you need a DMCA policy?
9. Web Site security issues?
10. Do you need and have an EIN? You can get that for free.
11. Do you have employees? - If so you need written policies regarding their authority and use of the internet.
12. Do you know the difference between a "browser wrap" and a "click wrap" and which do you need?
When I discuss this list with clients other issues arise. Finally, I always discuss with my clients their need for good accounting services. An accountant's advice as you start up can save you many dollars in tax that you might not save if you wait to speak to an accountant until your first tax return is due.
I hope this list will give you pause to think about those issues for which you might need to seek professional advice.
You may want to discuss your issues with a lawyer in more detail. Most of us here on Avvo, including myself, offer a free phone consult.
Andrew M. Jaffe
Attorney at Law
Practice Limited to E-Commerce and Internet Law
This post is provided for general informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice specific to you. This general information is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney in your jurisdiction. The attorney client relationship is not established by this post.