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California's Ban on Non-Competes

In terms of geographic size and economic sway, California is the sixth largest economy in the world, surpassing France in 2016. As a result, California's employment laws are strict, and lawmakers allow for little exceptions. One example of such a law is the state's stance against non-compete agreements. Whether you are an employer or employee in California, it is important that you understand the state's ban on non-competes and how it pertains to you.

According to HuffPost, California business owners attempt to skirt non-compete laws all the time. They attempt to do this in several ways. One such way is by claiming California laws should not apply to them because the business has headquarters in a state that allows non-competes. The courts routinely object this analysis. The courts also object the "choice of law" provision, which allows companies with multiple locations to choose which laws apply to them.

Business and Finance at Risk of Cyber Attack

Owning and operating a company in California requires organizational leaders to be strategic and thorough in making decisions that will steer the direction of their organization's future. While they will encounter roadblocks along the way, it is imperative that they plan ahead to be able to effectively mitigate certain risks before they create a dangerous hazard. However, there are times when unforeseen circumstances, such as a cyber attack, can instantaneously compromise everything a company has worked so hard to achieve. 

Cyber attacks are essentially the confiscation of data by hackers who ultimately expose a company's most sensitive information. The consequences can be insurmountable and range from lawsuits filed by victims whose information was compromised, to a loss of equipment or software that was damaged during the cyber attack. One company that suffered a cyber attack as the one described, disclosed that they had spent nearly $114 million in recovering losses and rebuilding damages. 

Copyright extinctions offer prospects of a creative wave

William Shakespeare wrote, "What's past is prologue." This is his way of saying what has happened already merely sets the stage for what's to come.

This comes to mind because as we enter the new year, the U.S. is experiencing something that holds the potential to unleash a massive wave of human creativity, and with that is sure to come a tsunami of works meriting the protections only available through the proper application of intellectual property law.

What is trademark infringement?

If you have recently created a trademark for your business, product or service, you want to ensure it does not fall into the hands of any other entity. Your trademark represents your product, brand and/or name. When someone else uses it, it may mislead consumers, destroy your reputation and affect your bottom line. Trademark infringement occurs when an entity uses a mark without your permission. There are steps you can take to defend your business against trademark infringement.

When you discover that another party has been using your mark, you should determine what type of action you want to take. You may contact the entity and inform them of the infringement or you may file a trademark infringement lawsuit. This will prevent the other party from continuing to use your mark and it may allow you to collect any monetary damages that have occurred as a result of the unauthorized use.

What are common ways to get out of contract?

Sometimes when you sign a contract, you later find a need to get out of it. Generally, a contract in California is binding, meaning you have to honor it. However, there are some specific things that can void a contract and allow you to get out of it, according to USA Today.

One of the easiest ways to get out of a contract is if the other person breaks the contract first. If you can show the other party violated a term of the contract, then it is no longer valid and binding.

How can copyright registration offer more protection?

When it comes to intellectual property in California, sometimes it can be tough to protect it. You may not know right away that someone is using your work. Furthermore, once you discover an issue, it can be hard to remedy the situation. If you register your copyright, you will receive additional protections. Copyrights are registered with the U.S. Copyright Office. 

The U.S. Copyright Office explains registration is not a requirement. You own a copyright as soon as you share your creative work with the public. Registration, however, gives you legal proof of ownership. It also dates when you copyrighted the material. In addition, you have to register a copyright in order to sue someone for infringement.

When is misappropriation a crime?

If you own intellectual property rights in California, you have to stay on top of them to ensure nobody is using your intellectual property illegally. If you find someone violating your rights, then you can take them to court. Most of the time, this is a civil matter. That simply means you can sue for damages and the court punishes the person by making him or her pay you. However, according to StopFakes.gov, there are some cases where intellectual property rights violations are criminal in nature.

Misappropriation or the violation of your intellectual property rights may fall into the category of a crime for only certain cases involving certain types of intellectual property. For example, patent infringement is not a criminal violation. Generally, when there are issues with counterfeiting, it becomes criminal, such as a counterfeit trademark. Copyright infringement can also be criminal. Finally, stealing trade secrets is punishable as a criminal charge.

How can I safeguard my intellectual property?

As a successful California business, it's crucial that you protect valuable information that makes your company all that it is. This is especially true when it comes to intellectual property (IP), which can cause quite a few problems should it fall into the wrong hands. To ensure your IP remains safe, Forbes offers the following information.

Document your ideas

Wang IP Law Group scores big win for small organization

Copyright protections allow the owner the ability to hold a party that violates the copyright accountable for the violation. But when does the use of a copyrighted material rise to the level of a violation? That was the question discussed in a recent a case.

The case is a typical David v. Goliath story. In Divine Dharma Meditation International, et al. vs Institute of Latent Energy Studies, a large, worldwide organization accused a small nonprofit of violating its copyright when it displayed copyrighted artwork of a historical figure, Dasira Narada. The small nonprofit countered that its use of the artwork did not rise to a true violation and instead qualified as fair use of the artwork.

Wang IP Law Group Scores Big Copyright Win

Copyright protections allow their owners to hold violators of the copyright accountable. But when does the use of a copyrighted material rise to the level of a violation? This was the question discussed in a recent a case.

The case is a typical David vs. Goliath story. In Divine Dharma Meditation International, et al. vs. Institute of Latent Energy Studies, a large, worldwide organization accused a small nonprofit of violating its copyright when it displayed copyrighted artwork of a historical figure, Dasira Narada. The small nonprofit countered that its use of the artwork did not rise to a true violation and instead qualified as fair use of the artwork.

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