Trademarks, Technology & Intellectual Property

Flora Pettit’s trademark, technology and intellectual property practice offers comprehensive intellectual property services for owners and users of all types of intellectual property and technology, including patents, copyrights, trademarks and trade secrets. The primary focus of our practice is to support and assist businesses to identify their intellectual property, technology, know-how, and goodwill, and to take appropriate measures to capture, protect, and exploit its inherent value depending upon the business’ specific needs and strategy.

Our copyright, trademark, and patent licensing attorneys work closely with all types of business entities throughout Virginia, including software developers, data science and analytics companies, publishers, online content providers, e-commerce companies, “gaming” companies, and service providers, to devise creative and tax-efficient ways to acquire, hold, license, exploit, and protect intellectual property. We also assist businesses to take appropriate measures to respect the intellectual property rights of others, and to respond appropriately to claims of misappropriation or infringement.

Our services include:

  • Federal and International Trademark Protection.  Our trademark attorneys in Charlottesville and Harrisonburg assist companies in developing trade or service marks that are registerable with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, and then prepare, file and prosecute the application through the USPTO process, including appeals, if necessary. We have extensive experience responding to USPTO Office Actions, including initial refusals to register trademarks on the basis that the mark creates a likelihood of confusion with another business's trademark or on the basis that the mark is "merely descriptive". For clients who do business internationally, we also prepare, file, and prosecute international trademark applications.
  • Copyright Protection.  Our Charlottesville and Harrisonburg copyright attorneys work with companies to protect their copyrighted works, including source code, video games, books, photographs, works of art, and other materials, through registration with the Copyright Office. We also work with companies to ensure that their websites and online services receive the benefits of the DMCA Safe Harbor for third party materials (user content) uploaded to their sites.
  • Executive, Employee, and Contractor Agreements.  An entity’s use of appropriate assignment and nondisclosure agreements is critical in ensuring that the entity owns the intellectual creations of an executive, employee, or consultant, and can prevent the dissemination of information relating to such creations. We have assisted all types of entities to structure such agreements, tailoring them appropriately to address unique situations.
  • Protection of Confidential Information and Trade Secrets.  While often overlooked, trade secrets policies can be essential to provide a business with the benefits of legal protection for its confidential business information and strategies. We have experience in designing an appropriate trade secret policy to provide a business with the maximum protection under state trade secret laws. We also prepare confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements for our clients to use when sharing confidential information and trade secrets with third parties.
  • Acquisition, Licensing, and Distribution.  We have substantial experience in identifying, addressing, and resolving issues concerning the acquisition of intellectual property in the context of a merger, sale, or business reorganization, including tax issues. Our intellectual property attorneys in Charlottesville and Harrisonburg frequently draft and negotiate numerous types of licensing agreements, including software license and maintenance agreements (including so-called “click-wrap” and “shrink-wrap” models), patent licenses, university technology transfers, book and movie rights agreements, distribution agreements, strategic alliance agreements, and joint development agreements.
  • Software and Technology Licensing.  Our software and technology licensing attorneys in Charlottesville and Harrisonburg have extensive experience negotiating, drafting, and advising clients regarding a full spectrum of licensing agreements and strategies, including:
    • fully negotiated commercial software license agreements,
    • software support and maintenance agreements,
    • clickwrap licenses and other online contracts,
    • software as a service (SaaS) agreements,
    • cloud services agreements,
    • open source licensing (including parallel OSS and commercial licensing models),
    • end user license agreements (EULAs), and
    • beta tester agreements.
  • Terms of Use and Privacy Policies.  Our technology attorneys regularly draft website terms of use, privacy policies, acceptable use policies, and EULAs for websites and mobile apps (including iOS apps and Android apps), including both interactive and non-interactive websites, online stores, Internet-based communication services, data analytics services, subscription-based online training platforms, and websites for professional service providers, businesses, and individuals. We draw on the experience of our data privacy attorneys to help our clients develop privacy practices and privacy policies that comply with data privacy laws and regulations, including California’s "Shine the Light" Law, the California Online Privacy Protection Act (CalOPPA), the CAN-SPAM Act, the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), Federal Trade Commission Act, Section 5 (prohibiting unfair or deceptive acts or practices in or affecting commerce), the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), and the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield and the Swiss-U.S. Privacy Shield.
  • Litigation.  Whether a business needs to enjoin a former employee from using stolen secrets, prevent a competitor from using its trademark, or defend a claim of misappropriation or infringement asserted by a competitor, Flora Pettit's IP litigation attorneys stand ready to represent that business in state or federal court.

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