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The Claim Game: FDA Monitoring & Challenging Health Claims for Cannabis Products

There is increasing recognition of the healing potential of cannabis. Even the FDA has approved two synthetic marijuana-based medicines for treatment of nausea in chemotherapy patients and to increase appetite in AIDS patients suffering extreme weight loss. However, since the FDA’s approval of new drugs relies on testing and clinical trials, the status of cannabis as a Schedule I... read more

Protecting Your Trade Secrets

By definition, a trade secret can be almost anything that has economic value and provides a competitive advantage. A well-known example of a well-kept trade secret is the Coca-Cola formula. Since 1891, founder Asa Candler maintained strict policies to keep and protect the formula from the public. Each state has its own laws for protecting trade secrets, but all... read more

Is CBD Federally Legal?

Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the primary cannabinoids naturally occurring in plants with the genus Cannabis sativa L. CBD is non-intoxicating and often used in products to combat pain, inflammation, and anxiety. Sales of products containing cannibidiol (CBD) continue to increase as consumers begin to recognize the health benefits CBD affords. While most cannabis products are sold through highly... read more

Summary of Pending California Cannabis Legislation

As the California state legislature is back from summer recess, it is an apt opportunity to provide an overview of the pending legislation relating to cannabis trademarks, advertisement, packaging, and labeling. Unsurprisingly, child protection from cannabis products is one of the major drivers in these proposed bills. Additionally, the legislature’s regulations are designed to promote consumer safety and prevent... read more

Proposed California Bill to Ban Cannabis-Branded Merchandise Under SB 162 (Update)

Updated to reflect the Assembly amendments made on July 20, 2017. (Revisions to this previously posted article are in bold or in red.) On June 27, California Governor Jerry Brown signed SB 94 into law effectively repealing MCRSA and AUMA, combining regulations governing medical and adult-use cannabis under the Medical and Adult-Use Cannabis Regulation Safety Act (MAUCRSA)—that’s a mouthful.... read more

Famous Trademarks & Cannabis Branding

By definition, trademark infringement is the unauthorized use of a mark on goods or services in a manner that is likely to cause confusion, deception, or mistake as to the source of the products. However, all trademarks are not created equal and stronger marks enjoy a broader scope of protection. In fact, trademark owners of U.S. registrations for strong... read more

Copyright v. Trademark Protection for Logos

Copyright protection may provide an alternate path to protecting a logo or design mark. Unlike trademark law, copyright law does not extend to protection to a word or phrase, such as a business name, but rather, it covers original works of art, including logos, infographics, and designs. In order to qualify for copyright protection, a work must meet three... read more

Is an IP Holding Company Right for Your Business?

A “holding company” is a business organizational structure that is set up as a corporation or limited liability company for the sole purpose of owning and maintaining particular assets. It is common to set up holding companies to manage and license intellectual property (IP) assets, i.e., patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets. IP holding companies may be attractive due... read more

On borrowing a “devilishly close” famous name

Among the “best ofs” for 2013 was Forbes’ list of The World’s Most Valuable Brands. Technology companies dominate, with Apple®, Microsoft®, IBM®, Google®, Intel®, and Samsung® holding 6 of the top 10 positions on the list. The others were Coca-Cola®, McDonald’s®, General Electric® and Louis Vuitton®. These are some examples of famous marks for brands that represent many years... read more

The Distinguished Mark: Stronger in Court

When choosing brand names, because all marks are not created equal, my advice is almost always to choose a strong mark. But there are pros and cons. Legally, a strong mark is more protectable. When considering whether there is an actionable infringement, we consider the marks’ similarity, whether the products are related, channels of trade, sophistication of the relevant... read more
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iplaw@evoke.law 415.398.3141