If you’re starting a business, you know there are a lot of things you are responsible for. A lot of problems can easily arise during your entrepreneurial efforts, and potential legal issues are not to be taken lightly.
There are 3 main areas of law that you will need to become more familiar with if your business is to succeed.
A trademark is a form of intellectual property that defines products and services that your business provides. A lot of things can be trademarked, not just logos or business names. Sounds can be trademarked – think of the sound of your Apple computer turning on. Expressions can be trademarked, like “let’s get ready to rumble” or “I pity the fool” (yes, these expressions have in fact been trademarked). Even colors can be trademarked – Barbie Pink and Wiffle Ball Bat Yellow.
If you’re starting a business, you should probably know that one of your biggest assets is going to be brand awareness. You want a logo and a business name that is going to stand out from the competition, that’s easy to remember, that you can burn into people’s minds.
Fortunately, a trademark attorney can help you conduct a comprehensive trademark search to find out if the idea you have in mind is already taken, or if a “confusingly similar” design already exists.
A trademark attorney can also help you file your mark with the USPTO in a way that ensures you’ll get it approved the first time.
After that, your attorney can help you with trademark protection and enforcement. That’s right, the USPTO isn’t going to do that for you. It’s up to you – that is to say, your attorney – to do so.
If someone is using your trademark, or one confusingly similar to it, your attorney can send a cease-and-desist letter backed by the threat of legal force.
You learn more about what a trademark attorney can do for you here.
You want to make sure you’re choosing the most appropriate business entity – sole proprietorship, partnership, LLC, C-corporation, S-corporation, etc. – to use while you operate your business. Depending on a number of different factors, the right decision can yield a myriad of benefits and help you get the most out of your business.
When it comes to business contracts, mergings, hiring and firing, and taxes, a business attorney can be your best friend. He or she will help you avoid legal trouble and, if it does arise, can represent you in court.
If your business needs a physical space in order to operate (as opposed to a virtual office or simply working from home), an attorney can help you get all of your legal bases covered, ensure all the right documents are filed, and help you avoid any potential legal problems that may arise.
A good attorney can help with matters of:
- Boundary disputes
- Eminent domain
- Land development
Having a competent attorney by your side will give you the legal security you need to excel in your field.