A few recent high profile trademark disputes making the news have brought to light again the importance of protecting your business’ trademarks and other IP. Specifically, these stories highlight the need to register your trademarks and draft carefully negotiated terms in any licensing agreements your business enters into.

Tully’s May Lose Right to Use of “Tully’s”

The Seattle Times reported that Keurig Green Mountain has sued Global Baristas, the Seattle investor group that bought Tully’s and saved it from bankruptcy, to prevent Tully’s from using the trademark “Tully’s” in its name. Keurig is arguing that Global Baristas has violated its licensing agreements by selling coffee from another local firm (Dillanos) without Keurig’s permission. Keurig claims that Tully’s owes Keurig $469,000.

In a statement last month,…

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Litigation is expensive. At best, it’s an unwanted entry on your business’s balance sheet. At worst, a lawsuit could mean going out of business— if the businesses assets must be liquidated to pay a judgment or if the businesses resources must be used for litigation expenses. The following are tips to avoid or limit the impact of litigation.

1. Keep good records.

Without good records, proving what was actually said or done by the parties to a lawsuit is a difficult, if not impossible, task. Further, good records can effectively destroy a factual dispute. Good records can result in a dismissal of the case or at least limit the case to issues of law, rather than factual issues, which…

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