Intellectual Property & Technology

The CommLaw Group has significant experience representing companies and individuals involved in the development, production, procurement, advancement and exploitation of technology, information, brands and artistic creations. Clients range from small entrepreneurial companies and partnerships to Fortune 1000 companies in diverse technology, services and media industries. Attorneys practicing in our Intellectual Property & Technology practice represent clients with respect to copyright, trademark, trade dress, design patents, computer law, software, media rights, licensing, Internet/E-commerce matters (including jurisdiction and privacy rights) and related business torts such as unfair competition, rights of publicity, and false advertising.

With deep backgrounds in communications and technology, our attorneys bring unique experience, skills and understanding of the complex legal and regulatory environment of the Internet and emerging digital content distribution systems. Our attorneys recognize that protection of intellectual property rights is crucial in today’s fast-paced, technology-driven global economy. Our approach to intellectual property focuses on both securing and protecting a client’s valuable rights and providing our clients with the legal resources to exploit those rights. Through our firm’s close connection to the nation’s capital, our attorneys are also well connected with the current regulatory and legislative issues affecting intellectual property management.

Our capabilities and experience in intellectual property matters fall generally within the following broad categories:

  • Planning, prosecution and implementation of intellectual property protection
  • Licensing and transactional matters
  • Infringement defense and prosecution and other disputes

Copyright

Copyright development and protection is one of the most dynamic aspects of the emerging digital landscape. Almost all aspects of new media business development involve managing copyrights, from online content publication and distribution to software development and licensing.

The CommLaw Group’s attorneys are dedicated to providing clients with the best legal advice concerning the protection, development, registration and enforcement of proprietary rights in artistic and technical works such as film and music compositions, literary works, and computer software and databases. Our firm handles every aspect of copyright management, including preparation of copyright registration materials, drafting software licensing and development agreements, and enforcement of current copyrights against potential infringers.

Safeguarding original works of authorship such as artistic works, software, and publications is fundamental to the success of any technological enterprise. For that reason, in addition to helping clients secure their intellectual property rights, our firm is dedicated to helping clients realize the full economic potential of those rights and defending them against potential infringement.

The CommLaw Group has expert knowledge in cutting edge copyright issues such as enforcement of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”), liability of ISPs following the Supreme Court’s Grokster decision, fair use arguments in a digital environment, and emerging regulatory matters such as the digital television transition, broadcast flag implementation, policing requirements of broadband service providers, and protection of computer software and Internet code.

Because our attorneys bring a solid background in technology and Internet development to their legal practice, the firm’s copyright practice is remarkably well suited to attack and solve technology related copyright issues. The CommLaw Group’s attorneys can assist your company with the preparation and filing of copyright applications, enforcement and protection of existing copyrights, and licensing or assignment of right.

Trademarks

Trademarks today are among our clients’ most valuable intellectual property assets, not only for those traditionally brand-driven consumer product companies, such as calling cards, but increasingly among all of our technology and telecommunications clients. With the globalization of potential markets and the rapid expansion of the electronic marketplace of the Internet, more and more companies recognize that their corporate and product names, logos, and slogans are essential to effectively communicate product value and company reputation and to establish brand loyalty.

Our firm offers a full range of trademark services to address these critical business needs.  The CommLaw Group will:

  • Assist clients with strategic portfolio management
  • Conduct exercises to clear our clients’ trademarks throughout the world
  • Develop brand guidelines to encourage proper trademark use by clients’ employees, vendors, partners and media outlets
  • Negotiate and document trademark licenses and assignments to maximize portfolio revenues
  • Implement cost savings programs designed to avoid adoption of marks that cannot be protected
  • Design staged registration programs to register our clients’ marks in various areas of the world depending on manufacturing, sales and economic realities
  • Prepare and file all registration, opposition, litigation and post-registration documents
  • Audit trademark registrations
  • Oppose and petition to cancel third-party applications and registrations which may be too similar to our clients’ trademarks
  • Handle trademark and domain name enforcement
  • Represent clients in resolution of international and domestic trademark disputes
  • Defend clients against unwarranted charges that their trademarks or trade names may be too similar to third-party trademarks or trademark registrations

Perhaps the most important step in developing a business is securing the rights to the name of the new product or service. For this reason, our firm is committed to ensuring that clients are fully advised about all the potential business and legal issues that arise during the trademark selection. We counsel clients on both the practical and legal options for trademark registration. We also help effortlessly guide clients through the complex state, federal and international laws that govern trademark acquisition.

In addition to offering our clients expert legal advice on trademark selection and registration, our firm provides a comprehensive trademark “monitoring and watch” service that allows us to uncover potential conflicts for newly filed trademark applications in the United States and Internationally.

Securing trademark registrations for our clients’ marks is only one element of the firm’s practice. Our firm is committed to protecting a client’s brand identity through policing a client’s trademark for possible infringement, fighting counterfeiting of trademarks, and defending against claims of infringement.

Because The CommLaw Group’s attorneys possess backgrounds in technology and Internet development, we are well suited to aggressively promote and develop our clients’ trademarks in the expanding digital marketplace. Our attorneys have wide-ranging knowledge in technological matters such as domain name registration, advertising on the Internet, cyber-squatting and anti-spam legislation.

Trade Dress/Design Patents

The CommLaw Group helps protect our clients’ product trade dress and designs. We have represented companies in the prosecution of design patent applications in the U.S. and around the world and worked to enforce their protected designs and trade dress. Our clients are multinational, innovative design-driven companies. We work with them to achieve their business goals in both the procurement of strong patent portfolios and the enforcement of patents.

Our attorneys recognize the importance of design patent prosecution strategies and the enforcement of design patents, which we believe is important to procuring strategic and strong, enforceable design patents.

Our practice recognizes and is sensitive to the fact that in any industry in which a product’s launch is followed closely by imitations, timing is of the essence, and expedited processing is an important result to which we are dedicated. Indeed we have successfully prosecuted applications on an expedited basis and had applications issued as early as within six months of filing.

When necessary, we will zealously prosecute our client’s rights to stop an unscrupulous copyist, be it through cease and desist letters, temporary restraining orders, preliminary injunctions or lawsuits. Our IP practice also aids our clients in seizing and destroying counterfeit goods.

Internet Brand Protection and Domain Name Management

By coupling technology with The CommLaw Group’s attorneys’ trademark capabilities and experience, we assist clients in targeting the most damaging forms of brand abuse occurring on the Internet, including:

  • Provide clients with customized Internet monitoring to help track, prioritize and manage key forms of online abuse
  • Collect and analyze relevant information based on the results of monitoring
  • Provide advice on infringing domain name registrations and websites
  • Assist clients in cybersquatting litigation, when needed
  • Trademark infringement/dilution
  • Domain name abuse
  • Traffic diversion
  • Diverted sales
  • Claimed affiliations
  • Unauthorized/counterfeit sales
  • Association with offensive content
  • Other important abuses

International

To protect their interests, companies today often need to file for protection of their intangible rights in more than one country. The CommLaw Group’s Intellectual Property & Technology practice provides international IP advice to both U.S. and foreign companies, including:

  • Counsel regarding the WTO Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights
  • Advice on specific provisions for protecting IP rights under other international, regional and bilateral agreements
  • Prosecution and defense of matters relating to unfair trade practices and trademark infringement, before the International Trade Commission

The scope of services available from The CommLaw Group extends well beyond the U.S. borders. We have successfully filed trademark and design patent applications for our clients around the world, including:

  • Andean Pact Countries
  • Australia
  • Canada
  • China
  • European Union
  • Hong Kong
  • India
  • Japan

Anti-Counterfeiting

Today, counterfeiting is a global enterprise – a devastating problem for companies in numerous industries around the world. According to the FBI, counterfeiting now costs U.S. companies some $250 billion annually.

The CommLaw Group’s attorneys have a broad range of experience dealing with the manufacture, sale and distribution of unauthorized products throughout the world. Our attorneys work closely with individuals and organizations in countries around the world that enable us to avoid protracted, expensive efforts, as well as offer our clients knowledge of how things work culturally and legally, who can get things done, and how to do it efficiently.

  • Lead intensive counterfeiting investigations around the world
  • Handle anti-counterfeiting actions ranging from a letter to face-to-face visits, writs/complaints and full-blown search and seizure actions, often coupled with criminal proceedings
  • Work with government agencies to identify the importation of counterfeit products and assist in the seizures of counterfeit shipments

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