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The Many Types Of Intellectual Property?

Posted by on 10:45 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on The Many Types Of Intellectual Property?

Intellectual property is a pretty important legal field that has an impact on many aspects of your life. If you have any intention of owning your own brand, creating your own products, inventing anything, or even if you are just a normal consumer of products, then learning about the different forms of intellectual property can be quite helpful. To help you get started, here are the three main types of intellectual property: What material does a copyright cover? Copyrights are probably the type of intellectual property that you have heard the most about, since copyright protection is a rather popular topic nowadays. The basic idea is that a copyright allows you to protect a creative work from being reproduced or sold. Having a copyright allows you to control who can and cannot copy and sell your work, which allows you to have some degree of control over how much money you make from your product. Many different materials are covered, including movies, books, plays, video games, songs, and television shows. However, it’s important to note that another work needs to have copied your copyrighted work if you want to take it to court. If there are just some similarities (such as two movies that have very similar characters and stories), then your lawsuit might not be very successful. What material does a patent cover? While a copyright covers creative materials, a patent protects the more technological and industrial side of things. If you design some revolutionary new process or creation, then a patent can help you secure exclusive rights to that invention. This can allow you to sell your invention or use it for your own benefit until the patent runs out. Patents are also one of the hardest types of intellectual property to acquire because your invention will need to satisfy a long list of requirements in order to qualify for patent acquisition. What material does a trademark cover? Finally, trademarks cover specific concepts that relate to branding and identification of companies. Words, logos, shapes, and images can be trademarks, which makes the field pretty difficult to pin down. This is made even murkier by the fact that you don’t really need to apply for a trademark in some cases. Instead, simply using your logo for a long period of time will allow you to have some claim to that logo as a trademark by default. If another company then infringes on your trademark, you will have the ability to take them to court, even though you never officially purchased the rights to your...

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Legal Advantages Of Being The First To File For Divorce

Posted by on 2:25 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Legal Advantages Of Being The First To File For Divorce

When a married couple divorces, the one who initiates the divorce proceedings has several advantages over their partner. The advantages may be psychological, financial, or even legal. Here are three legal advantages you may enjoy by being the first to file for divorce: Choice of Jurisdiction If you live in different states, then you can both file for divorce in your respective states. You just need to satisfy your state’s residency requirements. The divorce proceedings will continue in the jurisdiction of the spouse who files first. The location of your divorce has a great impact on divorce process or outcome since states have different divorce rules. For example, a few states recognize fault divorces, which may benefit “innocent” spouses. You may, for example, apply for a fault divorce and (if you can prove the fault) walk away with a larger portion of your marital property. Chance to Withdraw the Petition It is easier for the spouse who filed for divorce to stop the process than it is for their spouse. If you initiated the proceedings and changed your mind shortly afterward, you can go to court and withdraw the petition. Each state has its own set of procedures to follow, but it usually involves completing and filing a document at the court where you submitted your petition. However, you have no such luck if you did not initiate the divorce proceedings. In that case, all you can do is to contest the elements in your partner’s petition, such as property and debt settlement. Chance to Control the Timing Finally, deciding to act, rather than waiting for your spouse to do it, may allow you to time your divorce to your benefit. Timing has a great effect on different aspects of divorce. For example, in most states, the assets you acquire after filing for divorce are your separate property, not marital property, which means you get to keep them during asset division. However, even if you decided a long time ago to divorce your spouse, but you haven’t submitted the relevant petition, anything you earn will be divided between you since it is considered marital property. Therefore, taking the initiative may help you time your divorce to help you protect your assets. Therefore, if you have made up your mind to divorce your partner, it’s best to consult an attorney and be the first to file the divorce petition. However, you aren’t doomed if your spouse beats you to the punch. Just react fast by consulting a lawyer to help you reply to the divorce petition. For more information, contact a local firm like McKone &...

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Potential Complications That May Make An Annulment Unappealing

Posted by on 3:14 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Potential Complications That May Make An Annulment Unappealing

Getting an annulment is an effective way of treating your previous marriage as if it never existed. However, an annulment isn’t for everybody because it is fraught with some complications. Here are three examples of such complications: You Might Not Get Spousal Support An annulment can destabilize you financially because your spouse isn’t legally obligated to support you after the marriage has been voided. This is unlike a divorce where you are entitled to financial support not only during the divorce process but also after the divorce is finalized. Consider an example where you quit your job to take care of your family after getting married. If your marriage is annulled a few months later, you may be left jobless and without spousal support. Only in a few states will you be awarded spousal support if your marriage is annulled after many years. Property Division Might Not Take Place In most states, if your marriage is annulled, each of you returns to their previous state before marriage. This means the property isn’t divided; rather, each of you retains the properties in their names. Therefore, if the house is in your spouse’s name, then they get to keep it. So you can be living in the same house today and tomorrow you have to move out because your spouse has a new roommate and you no longer live with them. Even if they decide to sell the house, they don’t have to seek your permission because the house isn’t your marital property. Proving the Annulment Ground May Be Difficult Each state has specific grounds for which a marriage can be annulled. The common ones include bigamy, incest, fraud, duress, and mental incompetence, among others. Also, the ground on which you are basing your application must have existed before your union. As is the usual case with legal requirements, you have to prove your ground. Unfortunately, this is easier said than done. For example, proving that your partner was mentally incompetent or impotent before your union isn’t easy; you may require expensive expert testimony. In fact, if your state allows it, it might be easier to get a no-fault divorce than an annulment. Therefore, if you wish to declare your marriage void, do your research and understand the potential obstacles. Consult a family lawyer to help you understand how the legal ramifications apply to your unique situation before making a decision. In some cases, you may be better off with a divorce. To learn more, contact a family lawyer like Watson Law...

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Why Social Security May Call For Independent Medical Examination

Posted by on 8:35 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Why Social Security May Call For Independent Medical Examination

Independent medical examination (IME) isn’t a requirement from everybody applying for Social Security Disability benefits. However, some people may be required to undergo it before their application can be processed. Here are three situations in which the Social Security Administration may send you to an independent medical examiner: Your Doctor Prefers Not To Perform the CE Doctors aren’t obliged to perform the consultative examination for Social Security.  Your doctor may decline to give the examination for one reason or another. For example, the doctor may decline to give the examination due to a busy workload. Since fees for these examinations are set by the Social Security, your doctor may prefer not to give you the CE if they feel the fees are too low and their time may be more valuable elsewhere. Whatever your doctors reason for boycotting the examination, you still have to be examined, so the SSA will send you to an independent examiner. The SSA Has Unfavorable Experience with Your Doctor The SSA has been sending people for medical examinations for many years, so it’s likely that they have dealt with many doctors in your area. If their experience with your doctor has been less-than-satisfactory, they may prefer to send you to an independent doctor instead. For example, it may be that your doctor hasn’t been cooperative with prior clients before or always sends incomplete examination reports. Your Doctor Lacks the Necessary Equipment The SSA determines the information it needs to handle your applications. Your doctor may be unable to supply the information required by the SSA if the doctor doesn’t have the necessary equipment to conduct the tests. In this case, you will be referred to an independent medical examiner with the necessary equipment. Your Doctor Is Unavailable Lastly, you may also get sent to an independent examiner if your treating physician is unavailable. This usually happens if you haven’t been treated by a doctor for a long time, and you have moved (or your doctor has moved). To make matters worse, this gap in treatment may also raise the need for medical examination because your health status may have changed from the last time you were treated. In such a case, you may be sent to an IME instead of wasting resources to locate your former treating physician. Whatever reasons send you to the independent medical examiner, its best to comply with the SSA’s directives because failure to do so may get your case dismissed. However, it’s in your best interest to consult an attorney before going for the exam. Your doctor will prepare you for the example, educate you on what to expect and how to behave during the examination. For more information, contact Todd East Attorney at Law or a similar legal...

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3 Myths About Corporate Lawyers

Posted by on 12:22 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Myths About Corporate Lawyers

Becoming a corporate lawyer is something that many potential law students are interested in. They often image high salaries as well as boardroom meetings and court. Many also associate being a corporate lawyer with high stress and crazy work hours. While there may be a handful of corporate law jobs that fit the stereotype, the reality is usually quite different. Here are three common myths about corporate law. It’s Always High Paying The salary for a corporate lawyer is somewhere between $66,000 and $170,000. There is a lot of variation in these numbers due to a variety of factors. Things like experience, employer, and even location can play a big role in how much a corporate lawyer takes home. Recent graduates of law school tend to fall on the low end of this salary range while experienced lawyers tend to fall on the high end. One thing that is true is that corporate law does on average pay more than what many other types of law pay. The average annual salary for lawyers in general is $133,470 while the average annual salary for a corporate lawyer working for companies and enterprises is $169,890.  Time Is Split Between The Boardroom and Courtroom Spending time in the courtroom is actually a rarity for many corporate lawyers. Corporate law is usually focused on drafting contracts and other business dealings. The main goal of many corporate lawyers is to make sure that their company’s transactions are legal. Often this type of law is said to be closer to banking than to law. This doesn’t mean that no time is spent int he courtroom. In fact, some companies do hire corporate lawyers just for litigation purposes. Either way, it is rare for a lawyer’s time to be spent evenly between the boardroom and the courtroom They Work All The Time Like many jobs, sometimes law requires working nights and weekends. One myth of corporate lawyers is that they spend every waking moment at work. While some big law firms and corporate offices may require a lot of time spent on work, not all corporate lawyers work crazy hours. Many firms do require that their employees work somewhere between 60 and 80 hours a week. Other lawyers often end up working less depending on where they work and their responsibilities.  Corporate law is something that many entering law school consider. Others may be turned off by this type of law’s reputation. The truth is that it is a very diverse field of law. Some corporate lawyers spend hours in the courtroom while others spend the majority of their time in the boardroom. The salary earned varies greatly from job to job as do working hours. Contact a corporate lawyer, like Ashley West at Carter West Law, for more...

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Got Your Eye on a Short Sale? Watch Out for These Legal Pitfalls

Posted by on 12:02 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Got Your Eye on a Short Sale? Watch Out for These Legal Pitfalls

When a homeowner faces foreclosure, the lending institution who holds the lien on the home may choose to allow the owner to sell the home for less than what is currently owed on the house. If you’re in the market for a new home, a short sale can be a great way to purchase a house at a bargain price. However, they can pose some legal pitfalls if you don’t know what to watch out for. Following are some of the more common pitfalls associated with short sales.  Banks May Not Disclose More often than not, homes are sold “as is” in a short sale, which means that the bank will not make any repairs on the home before you take possession. Additionally, banks often do not have to disclose potential problems with the home the same way that a private seller would. If the home is in a flood plain, affected by termite damage, or otherwise damaged, you will not have any legal recourse to seek compensation after you take possession. Any problems with the home, such as non-permitted additions, will also become your responsibility. You may even have to pay fines for problems that you didn’t know existed.  Closing Can Take a Long Time It can take a long time for a bank to approve a short sale because it can take a while for them to investigate the proposal and make a decision. What’s more, banks may push back closing dates due to legal issues surrounding the property. They may even pull the plug on a deal at the last minute. The bottom line is that you can’t depend on a closing date when you purchase a home through a short sale.  Debt May Be Attached Debts, such as liens and back taxes, may be attached to a property when you purchase it via a short sale. And since you are purchasing the home for less than what is owed, there may be some unexpected creditors that come out of the woodwork looking for their money. For example, the holder of a second mortgage may seek payment from you once you take ownership of the home.  Since there is so much legal red tape involved with short sales, it’s vital that you hire a real estate attorney with experience in short sales. An attorney can help you uncover potential pitfalls before they become problems. An attorney can also research the property to make sure there aren’t any liens or debts attached to the...

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4 Things To Know About Car Accident Lawsuits In Michigan

Posted by on 1:31 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 4 Things To Know About Car Accident Lawsuits In Michigan

If you live in Michigan and have been involved in a car accident, you need to understand how the state’s unique no-fault car insurance requirements affect your ability to sue the driver who was responsible for the accident.  #1 Your Insurance Covers Your Injuries In the state of Michigan, all drivers are required to carry no-fault car insurance. Essentially, no-fault car insurance means that you carry your own personal injury protection policy.  If you are involved in an auto accident, instead of relying on the other driver’s insurance to pay your medical bills, your auto insurance is obligated to pay your medical bills for you. They are also required to cover any lost wages that you suffer as a result of the accident. Your insurance is obligated to pay for all of your medical expenses up to the limits of your policy. #2 No Insurance? That’s Your Problem If you don’t have insurance, the other driver’s insurance company is not obligated to pay your medical bills. In fact, if you don’t have insurance and are involved in a car accident, you could find yourself facing a ticket or fine for breaking the law and failing to operate a vehicle without property insurance.  #3 Serious Injuries Are The Only Ones That Make It To Court Due to Michigan’s no-fault car insurance policy, if your insurance will pay for your medical bills and lost wages, you cannot pursue the at-fault driver through the court system. This policy was put in place so that small vehicular accident lawsuits would stop clogging up the court system. The only exception to this rule are serious injuries. If you sustained a serious injury that either caused permanent damage, serious disfigurement, or serious impairment, you can pursue the other driver in court of any and all expenses that exceed those covered under your no-fault insurance policy. #4 Statute Of Limitation Still Applies If you sustained serious injuries, it is important to note that there is a statute of limitations to your claim. If you sustained serious injuries, you have three years from the date of your accident to start your claim. That means your attorney would need to file the initial complaint as well as the summons within one year of the date of your accident.  If you were involved in a car accident in Michigan, more than likely your injuries will be covered through your own insurance policy and you will not need to sue the other driver for payment of your injuries. You can only sue the other driver if you sustained serious injuries that exceeded your no-fault insurance policy.  Consult with a company like Barton Smith & Barton LLP to learn more about your rights in situations like...

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Evidence Suppression When You’ve Been Accused Of A Crime

Posted by on 8:34 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Evidence Suppression When You’ve Been Accused Of A Crime

If you have been charged with a crime and you think the evidence against you is circumstantial at best, it’s time to consult with a qualified criminal law attorney to discuss your case. Depending on how the evidence was obtained, you may be able to get the evidence thrown out of court. This is done by filing a motion to suppress evidence, which allows the judge to take a hard look at the evidence against you, how the evidence was collected, and make a determination as to whether the evidence can be used in your case or not. Illegally Collected Evidence There are procedures that must be followed when collecting evidence. A skilled defense attorney will be well-versed in the ways in which evidence can be collected against you, and the ways officials will circumvent the system and collect evidence illegally. If you were part of an illegal search, this evidence is not admissible in court. Although there are exceptions, if evidence is collected during a routine traffic stop or at your home without a search warrant, this evidence is likely to be suppressed in court. If You Aren’t Read Your Rights Another reason evidence may be suppressed is if you were not read your Miranda Rights prior to being interrogated. These rights are simple, in that you must be told that anything you say can be used against you in a court of law. Any officer questioning you about a potential crime must read you your Miranda Rights before you answer any questions, or the evidence collected against you can’t be used in court. You have the right to not answer questions, or remain silent, and many people don’t exercise this right because they believe they have to fully cooperate with officials. You do not have to answer any questions, and you can request that an attorney be present during the questioning. The Evidence Has Broken the Chain of Custody If the evidence used against you can’t be accounted for at all times, the chain of custody may have broken. Evidence loses its credibility when the chain of custody breaks. For example, if your hair fibers were discovered at the scene of the crime, but the bag was mislabeled, the evidence is no longer useful to the prosecution. If you find yourself charged with a crime, it’s time to talk with a criminal law attorney that can help walk you through the process of evidence suppression....

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3 Reasons To Employ An Estate Attorney

Posted by on 8:50 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Reasons To Employ An Estate Attorney

The key to getting through life with greater ease simply involves taking the time to plan. If you own an estate, you will want to make the proper arrangements for your family when you die. This is the best way to avoid putting a burden on your family and can assist your case in getting through the court system faster. If you are an estate owner, you may be interested in the many reasons to rely on an estate attorney to assist you. Reason #1: Allocate your assets In order to avoid the state you live in determining the family member or person that will be awarded your assets, you should create a customized list of this in advance. For instance, do you want to leave your antique desk to a distant cousin or your cash balance to your spouse? If so, the key to doing this with greater ease is by deciding beforehand your demise how your assets will be divided. Reason #2: Create a trust One of the advantages of working with an estate attorney is being able to set up at the trust. Creating a trust will allow you to many benefits that are listed below: 1.    You can put specific conditions regarding cash or assets you leave to others. For instance, if you feel that your child won’t be responsible with money until the age of 21, you can ask this money not to be given until that time. 2.    You can have more protection from any creditors you may owe from filing a legal claim against your heirs. 3.    You will have the opportunity to choose a person that you trust explicitly to be the trustee of your estate. Reason #3: Avoid probate One of the challenges for any estate owner that doesn’t create this plan is the possibility of family members having to go through a long court battle. This is referred to as probate and may take a great deal of time before these individuals will receive the items you have left behind. Additionally, there are fees that are associated with probate, and these can be as steep as 7% of the estate’s worth.  It’s important to have the peace of mind that accompanies planning your estate. This will allow you to know in advance how the things you have worked for your entire life will be distributed. Be sure to rely on the expertise of an estate attorney to assist you with this important...

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Why You Should Hire A Patent Lawyer To Protect Your New Business

Posted by on 8:01 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Why You Should Hire A Patent Lawyer To Protect Your New Business

If you are in the process of launching a start up and you have a new idea to introduce into the market, you are obviously going to be very interested in protecting that idea. Thankfully, filing a patent with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) can provide the legal protection you seek. That said, the process of filing a patent may be something you are not familiar with. This is where a patent lawyer can come in quite handy. Here are three reasons why you may want to hire a patent lawyer to help protect your new business. It Can Be Less Expensive Than You Think A leading reason why some business owners choose to try and file the paperwork for their patents themselves is because hiring an attorney obviously comes with additional costs and if you are a start up, every single dollar is precious. That said, patent lawyers are adept at dealing with new business owners and understanding that you may be strapped for cash. Many are often willing to work with you on a budget. If you limit the application process to just your most critical ideas, you can potentially limit the amount of time the lawyer spends on the application, saving you money in the process. Stop Yourself From Revealing Too Much Information Patent lawyers excel at helping people decide the precise amount of information about the new invention that needs to go into the patent. A common problem some business owners make when applying for their first patent is being too detailed in their descriptions. You could actually put yourself at a disadvantage by giving away too much info, some of which may be related to other inventions your company is working on and not focused on the main invention for the patent. An attorney can  help you streamline this process and protect key data about your inventions and your company. Help Point Out Key Differences from the Competition In order to get a patent, you must show how your idea works but you also must show that it is new. This means you will often have to demonstrate how it is different in some key way from other inventions already on the market. If the language you use makes your invention sound too similar to something already on the market, the patent application will likely get declined. A patent lawyer can help you review records, some of which may be over your head and help identify what makes your product or idea different from the competition. If you are thinking of taking an idea and turning it into a business, it makes sense to protect your invention with a patent. While a patent application can be filed without the help of an attorney, having a patent lawyer on your side can make a big difference. Patent lawyers can help you set your idea apart from others already on the market, prevent you from disclosing too much information to the competition and may actually be more affordable than you might think. Contact a local patent lawyer, like Kaufhold & Dix Patent Law, for more...

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