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Understanding Trademark and Service Mark Symbols

Posted By Jay Calhoun, Calhoun Law Firm, PLC, Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Trademark and Service Mark Symbols

A trademark/service mark is a distinctive mark (word, symbol, packaging) that identifies goods produced or services provided by a business. Its origin dates back to craftsmen who placed their signatures, or “marks”, on their products.  A trademark aids consumers in identifying products or services associated with producers or suppliers they value.

Trademark protection safeguards an owner’s exclusive right to use the mark to identify their goods or services.  The period of protection varies, but a trademark can be renewed indefinitely. Trademark protection is legally enforced by courts that have the authority to stop trademark infringement.

The ®, ™, and ℠ symbols associated with a mark each have a different use and afford different legal protections.

 

The trademark symbol, ™, is used to claim trademark rights to a particular name, logo or slogan in connection with the sale of products. When a new line of products is created and the associated trademark has yet to be registered, the ™ symbol can be used next to the mark.  Use of the ™ in connection with a trademark does not grant the business any additional trademark rights. Only applying for and obtaining a trademark can do that. A business can, however, use the ™ symbol even if they have not yet applied for a trademark on the name. Think of it as a placeholder until a registered federal trademark is acquired.

 

The service mark symbol, ℠, is essentially the same as the trademark symbol. The key difference is that service marks are applied to service businesses where trademarks are applied to products. A service business, will often place the ℠ next their business name in advertising and promotions.  The same legal status applies to the service mark symbol as the trademark symbol. It does not grant the business any additional legal rights, and the business does not need to have applied for a service mark to use it.

 

The trademark registration symbol, ®, denotes a federally registered trademark. Under federal law, a business may not use this symbol unless they have acquired a federal trademark registration. Once the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) notifies the business that its trademark registration application has been approved and registered, the business can append the ® symbol to the trademarked name, logo or slogan. The business can use the ® symbol only in connection with the goods and services listed in the federal registration, and the business can only use it while the trademark is active.  Federal registration has several advantages, including notice to the public of the registrant's claim of ownership of the mark, a legal presumption of ownership nationwide, and the exclusive right to use the mark on or in connection with the goods or services set forth in the registration.

 

The Calhoun Law Firm, PLC headquarters are located at 2375 East Camelback Road #600 Phoenix, Arizona 85016. For more information visit law4sb.com or contact Jay Calhoun at  contactus@law4sb.com or (480) 967-1800.

Tags:  attorney  law  lawyer  small business 

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What You Need to Know About the Equifax Data Breach

Posted By Kenyatta Turner, LegalShield Independent Associate, Friday, September 15, 2017

What you need to know about the Equifax Data Breach:

Equifax, Inc – a major credit bureau, announced on Thursday, 9/7/17, that a massive data breach was discovered in July, which may have exposed names, birth dates, Social Security numbers and addresses of approximately 143 million U.S. consumers. The current US population is approximately 326 million, so this data breach potentially affected 44% of Americans! In addition, a smaller amount of driver’s license numbers, credit card numbers and certain documents were obtained. The breach lasted from mid-May to July of 2017.

This is just the latest example of how, no matter how careful you are, there are forces beyond your control that can still lead to your personally identifiable information being exposed.

At IDShield, we know how stressful data breaches are, and we are here to help.  As a member, please know:

  • You have full access to our dedicated and experienced licensed private investigators to ask any questions and get help if you are worried that you are a victim of fraud.
  • You have proactive credit monitoring through Experian and will be alerted if there are any changes to their credit report.

If you are not a member of IDShield, there are still steps that you can take to provide an extra layer of security.

  • First, set up a fraud alert. This will reduce the chance of a fraudster opening a credit or loan account in your name. If you place the alert with one bureau, they will ensure its placed on the other bureaus as well. Fraud alerts last for 90 days, but can be renewed. You can search online for placing a fraud alert and select one of the main bureaus to set it up through. To sign up via Experian, use this link: https://www.experian.com/fraud/center.html. To sign up via TransUnion, use this link: https://www.transunion.com/fraud-victim-resource/place-fraud-alert.
  • Second, be diligent. Don't give out your personal information if it sounds fishy. IDShield members, if you're unsure, this is a great time to call your licensed private investigator for advice!
  • Third, change your passwords for online banking and other finance accounts. This will reduce the risk of your money or assets being moved fraudulently. As you change your password, use your IDShield Vault password manager to generate a new strong password!

And of course, if you don’t yet have IDShield, this is a great time to sign up for comprehensive identity protection and full service, white glove restoration. Visit www.idshield.com to learn more!

 

I'm here to help, so please do not hesitant to contact me!

Kenyatta Turner, LegalShield / IDShield Independent Associate, 602-367-1069

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Tags:  data breach  financial  financing  fradulent  fraud  hackers  identity protection  law  lawyer  Legal  legal advice  legal services  legalshield  lending  loans 

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Arizona Judge Dismisses More Than 1,100 ADA Cases

Posted By Trey Lynn, Ogletree Deakins, Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Arizona Judge Finds Standing Is a Must for Serial ADA Plaintiff, Dismisses More Than 1,100 Cases

Author: Caroline Larsen (Phoenix)

Published Date: February 20, 2017

An Arizona judge dismissed more than 1,100 lawsuits against Arizona businesses alleging that their parking lots are not accessible to persons with disabilities. Judge David M. Talamante rejected the plaintiffs’ argument that the Arizonans with Disabilities Act (AzDA) permits any person who believes a place of public accommodation has violated the act to bring a civil action.

The court found that any plaintiff in an Arizona court must demonstrate that it has experienced injury or harm to establish standing to sue. The court further found that these plaintiffs failed to make such a showing, since they did not allege that they ever visited or attempted to visit the businesses they sued. 

In 2016, the plaintiffs filed more than 1,500 virtually identical lawsuits alleging minor, technical violations of Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) and the AzDA, such as a lack of “van-accessible” signage or signs that are posted a few inches too low. In September of 2016, the court entered orders consolidating more than 1,100 pending cases and permitting the Arizona Attorney General’s Office to intervene as a limited purpose defendant in order to pursue dismissal of all the actions.

Prior to the February 17 oral argument, the court denied denied plaintiffs’ motion to present additional briefing in light of a bill pending in the Arizona Legislature that seeks to revise the AzDA to expressly clarify that only an aggrieved person who believes a place of public accommodation has violated the Act may bring a civil action.

Upon granting the motion to dismiss, the court directed the Attorney General to file a proposed form of judgment, along with any motion for sanctions, attorneys’ fees, and costs, within 10 days. The plaintiffs’ counsel, Peter Strojnik, asked that the final judgment be entered as soon as possible, suggesting he may pursue an appeal of the dismissal on behalf of his clients. The Arizona Court of Appeals previously denied the plaintiffs’ petition for special action review of an earlier order denying its motion to strike Judge Talamante from presiding over the cases brought by AID.

What Can Your Business Do?

While Judge Talamante’s order brings the first round of litigation to a close, the appeals process may keep the Arizona businesses affected by these lawsuits in the court system for at least another year or two. Business owners should also note that this decision will not signal the end of these kinds of lawsuits, which remain on the rise around the country. Business owners in Arizona and other states should carefully assess their physical places of business and the way they provide their services to ensure that they comply with the ADA.

Caroline Larsen  (Phoenix)

Caroline Larsen
Caroline Larsen has litigated and defended clients in a wide variety of employment matters in various venues, including Arizona state court, various district courts, the Arizona Court of Appeals, the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Department of Labor, Arizona Civil Rights Division, U.S. Department of Justice - Office of the Chief Administrative Hearing Officer, the Arizona Division of Occupational Safety and Health (ADOSH), U.S....

Tags:  attorney  law  lawyer  Legal  legal services 

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New App Connects Directly to an Attorney to Resolve Traffic Tickets with Snap by LegalShield

Posted By Kenyatta Turner, LegalShield Independent Associate, Monday, June 27, 2016

— LegalShield is making it easier than ever for customers to resolve traffic tickets with Snap by LegalShield, a new feature in the updated LegalShield app that will be available on July 1. Snap allows members to take a picture of a traffic ticket and, through the app, send it directly to their dedicated LegalShield law firm. Compared to similar apps, Snap is more cost effective, offers access to more legal services and is more widely available.

This app is important because it makes it simple for consumers to take immediate action and get help from a trusted resource. In addition to the cost of the ticket, traffic violations can add points to a driver’s motor vehicle record that may lead to higher insurance premiums for the next several years. For example, only five percent of people contest their speeding tickets in court, meaning more people choose to pay the ticket, court and insurance costs over paying high attorney’s fees to fight the ticket.

With Snap, users don’t have to choose between costs associated with the ticket and costs associated with representation by an attorney. Snap is included in a monthly LegalShield membership, which starts at $17.95 per month. Other apps have starting attorney costs of more than $100. Hiring an attorney directly can cost $250 or more per hour. Snap, as with all LegalShield services, is available in 49 states (with coverage in Alaska coming soon). Competitor services are available in fewer than 20 states or in “select cities and states.”

In addition, all tickets are serviced by LegalShield’s dedicated, one-of-a-kind network of law firms and experienced attorneys. LegalShield offers the convenience of DIY technology with the assurance of a high-quality, full-service law firm. In fact, to ensure member satisfaction and quality, members are surveyed after every interaction with a lawyer and rate their experience using a Net Promoter Score (NPS). The average NPS for LegalShield is 56, putting the company on par with companies like Apple and Nike.

“Every year, more than 41 million people receive speeding tickets across the country, and now the LegalShield app can serve all Americans, especially during the Fourth of July holiday—iconic for fireworks, bar-b-ques and moving violations,” says Jeff Bell, CEO of LegalShield. “Police activity increases nearly 50 percent around the peak holiday travel times, which undoubtedly results in more tickets. We want everyone to obey the law and be safe, but this app is ready when a ticket is issued.”

But Snap is for more than speeding tickets. For no additional fee, Snap includes:

  • consultation and representation for moving violations—like speeding tickets and failure to yield tickets—that do not result in a misdemeanor or felony;
  • consultation and representation for motor vehicle collisions, including defense by an attorney on any criminal charge for manslaughter, involuntary manslaughter, negligent homicide or vehicular homicide, arising from permitted use of a licensed motor vehicle;
  • up to 2.5 hours of attorney assistance to collect property damage claims of $5,000 or less when a member experiences property damage as a result of driving, being a passenger in or being struck by any motor vehicle;
  • up to 2.5 hours of attorney time when a driver's license is denied, cancelled, suspended or revoked and the right to appeal is provided;
  • up to 2.5 hours of attorney time when legal assistance is needed to reinstate or maintain a driver's license because of job-related matters or medical reasons;
  • consultation and representation with an attorney who has a minimum of two years of experience practicing law and is in good standing with the state bar association; and
  • response from an attorney within eight business hours.

For other violations or moving violations that do result in a misdemeanor or felony, LegalShield members are afforded a preferred member discount to their attorney’s fees, which can greatly reduce the financial burden of legal proceedings[i].

Snap is just one feature of a broader array of benefits for LegalShield members. For as low as $17.95 per month, LegalShield members get access to a dedicated attorney with an average of 19 years of experience in areas such as family matters, estate planning, financial and business issues, consumer protection, tax, real estate, benefits disputes and auto/driving issues. LegalShield also includes 24/7 emergency access to a dedicated provider, meaning members are always protected.

“It took decades to build our network of attorneys—one firm at a time, one state at a time. The relationships we have with our providers and the commitment they have to helping our members is unparalleled,” says Bell. “And together, we are furthering our commitment to broadening access to legal advice by not only providing the best legal services, but the best technology to access legal help.”

To purchase a LegalShield membership, visit www.LegalShield.com/hub/KenyattaTurner or call 602-367-1069. Note there is a 15-day waiting period between the start of a LegalShield membership and eligibility for coverage on some traffic violations. - LegalShield Blog

 

For more information about LegalShield or IDShield for yourself, your family, your business, or your employees, please contact Kenyatta Turner, Independent Associate at 602-367-1069 or KenyattaTurner@LegalShieldAssociate.com.  Worry Less...Live More!

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Tags:  attorney  court  driving  law  lawyer  legal advice  legal services  legalshield  mobile apps  safety  traffic 

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