Business Articles

Avoid Conflict Between Your Franchise Agreement and Commercial Lease
If you plan to buy a franchise which requires retail space, your business activities will be governed by at least two major contracts-the franchise agreement and the lease. In your dual roles as franchisee and tenant, you will want to know how the provisions in the franchise agreement and the lease interrelate to lessen the chance of conflict between them and to maximize your successful performance under each.

Tips for Tenants Negotiating a Commercial Lease
While this article is mainly addressed to those who are planning to open an office or retail establishment at a new location, it also offers useful information to those who are about to exercise some option provided for in their lease, such as the option to renew or to take expansion space. You are in the best bargaining position during the initial negotiation stage. However, depending on the surrounding economic circumstances, you can also use your exercise of an option as an opportunity to "amend" some provisions in your lease.

Intellectual Property Articles

Attorney's Fees in Copyright Infringement Cases
One of the benefits of registering your copyright in a work with the US Copyright Office is the opportunity to seek recovery of your attorney's fees if you subsequently pursue an infringement action and are the "prevailing party."

Statutory Damages Claimed for Copyright Infringement of Songs
When advising artists, authors and song writers about ways to protect their interests in their creative works, I encourage them to file for copyright registration. But even if you follow all of the rules and register your copyright, you may still come up short when it comes time to enforce against infringers.

Consider Insurance to Help Protect Your Intellectual Property
In the course of advising business clients, I have urged those with intellectual property ("IP") rights to take precautions to avoid being engulfed in costly infringement disputes. The first line of defense to such threats is to use best practices with the handling of your IP, i.e., to know its provenance. However, as with all risk management, another path is to acquire adequate insurance coverage.

Who Owns Copyright in Source Code for Start-Up Company?
Start-up ventures, especially in the area of technology, often begin based on nothing more than good faith assumptions of the founders. Frequently they operate informally without understanding the need to document the relationships among the venture, its principals and its employees. More often than not avoidable disputes ensue, creating needless expense, arguments and sometimes the split-up of the founders or the loss of key employees leading to the dissolution of the venture.