Articles/News

Aug 29 2016

Protecting your Brand – Inception to Global Market

Owners of emerging businesses may feel there are no new marks, that all the marks have already been used. But new businesses form every year and have created some of the most memorable new trademarks, such as Facebook, YouTube, OrganicGirl, Lyft and Airbnb. Selecting a new mark and protecting it as soon as possible by […]

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Aug 29 2016

The Effects of the Defend Trade Secrets Act

Prior to the enactment of the DTSA, injured parties could only file civil trade secret misappropriation claims in state court under state law. The Uniform Trade Secrets Act (UTSA) published by the Uniform Law Commission provided a framework to help states establish standard guidelines. Most states, including California, adopted the UTSA in some form, however […]

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Aug 5 2016

‘Happy birthday’ Case May Change Content Licensing Practices

Excerpted from the article: “[The Happy Birthday to You case has] some important takeaways. Mistakes in a copyright registration, such as misstating the author or failing to identify the material, do not generally invalidate the registration. However, such mistakes can make proving ownership of a valid copyright in the work at issue difficult. The copyright […]

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Aug 5 2016

The Most Famous Song in the World Set Free: Impacts of the Happy Birthday to You Settlement

Of the lessons learned from Good Morning to You Productions Corp. et al. v. Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., Andrew S. Mackay and Daniel J. Schacht encourage practitioners to, “Take care that your copyright registration is correct, or you will lose important evidentiary presumptions.” “If you are a copyright owner, don’t assume that you will not bear […]

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Aug 4 2016

Donahue Fitzgerald Attorneys Recognized in the Best Lawyers in America© 2016 Edition

OAKLAND (August 28, 2015) – Three attorneys from Donahue Fitzgerald were recognized in the 2016 edition of Best Lawyers in America©: Dawn Newton, Franchise Law Kristin A. Pace, Tax Law Merrill J. Schwartz, Corporate Law The Best Lawyers in America rankings are based solely on peer-review surveys in which tens of thousands of attorneys confidentially evaluate […]

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Aug 2 2016

Watermark Women Like Us- May 5, 2016

Wednesday, May 5 was the inaugural Watermark Women Like Us (WLU) networking event in the East Bay. With almost 40 professional women from Berkeley, Oakland, Pleasanton, Walnut Creek and other East Bay cities attending, the event was a huge success. “Watermark already had WLU events across the Bay Area in San Francisco, South Bay and […]

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Jul 26 2016

2015 California Employment Legislation Update

Fortunately, unlike 2013 (when the Legislature increased the state’s minimum wage) and 2014 (when it enacted the paid sick leave law), the majority of employment-related bills enacted in 2015—the most important of which are summarized below—were aimed at clarifying or amending existing laws.  Except for AB 1506 and AB 304, both of which were enacted […]

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Jul 7 2016

Copyright Registration

The importance of registering creative works with the U.S. Copyright Office cannot be overstated. Registration generally is a prerequisite to filing a lawsuit for copyright infringement, and copyright holders may only recover federally prescribed statutory damages and recovery of full costs, including attorney’s fees, if registration occurs within established time frames. Those statutory damages range […]

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Jul 7 2016

A Smoking Gun in the Case of Who Owns ‘Happy Birthday to You’

KQED’s Cy Musiker interviews Donahue Fitzgerald attorney Daniel Schacht and his client, Rupa Marya, about the Happy Birthday To You class action lawsuit. Schacht explains the copyright issues of the Happy Birthday To You‬ ‪class action lawsuit, which has captured the world’s attention. In the interview he points to a songbook published in the early […]

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Jul 7 2016

Why Louboutin Matters: What Red Soles Teach Us About the Strategy of Trade Dress Protection

When Yves Saint Laurent created an overall red women’s high heeled shoe with red uppers, red platform heels and red soles, to Louboutin this was trademark infringement and the retailer sought to enforce its trademark in U.S. and European courts. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit found the brand’s trademark consisted in […]

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