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Atlanta Business & Commercial Law Blog

Lawsuits against Equifax are already underway. Who can sue?

Almost as soon as Equifax announced its unprecedented data breach, two proposed class actions were filed in federal court. One was filed by a group of consumer rights attorneys who had just won the right to sue Yahoo for another large data breach. More suits are almost certain to follow.

Who has the right to bring a lawsuit against the credit reporting giant? Unfortunately, the issue is somewhat novel to the courts and there have been some differences in opinion. One thing that seems likely to happen, based on previous data breach litigation, is that multiple suits will be consolidated into a single action in a single federal court. Early-stage motions, however, will probably be heard before that consolidation.

3 ways to avoid business litigation

One event that many business owners in the Atlanta area do not look forward to is litigation. It is often time-consuming, expensive and stressful. It can interfere with your ability to successfully manage your company. Litigation can also hinder your company’s growth and lead to an adverse reputation that could make it hard for you to stay in business. 

Although lawsuits are very common in the business world, there are ways to reduce the number of times you have to deal with them. Take some time to review the following suggestions on how to resolve disputes so you can avoid business litigation. 

Ronald McDonald versus a real estate magnate

After five years of conflict with franchisees fighting a fast food giant, northern and eastern India now finds itself without 169 McDonald’s restaurants.

McDonald’s entered the India market in 1996 by launching two joint ventures. One managed by Hardcastle Restaurants and Westlife Development and the other headed by Connaught Plaza Restaurants. The latter is owned by New Delhi real estate magnate Vikram Bakshi.

2 ways to mitigate business risks

As the owner of a small business in Atlanta, you likely have found that running your own company can be a liberating and rewarding experience. But it can also be full of challenges, complications and stress if you are not careful. It is important for you to think about the risks your business faces to keep them from affecting its success, reputation and profits. 

It may be hard for you to imagine having to deal with risks outside of ones that cause physical damage to your property, such as accidents and theft. But there are many internal and external risks that you should know about, such as partnership and client disputes, clients, finances and theft. Here are two ways you can minimize the number of risks your business encounters daily. 

Are the promises of crowd-funded products too good to be true?

Medicine shows once toured the country as pitchmen hawked the latest “miracle cure” patented medicine that could cure everything from common ailments to serious diseases. That is, when the magical medicinal was not smoothing wrinkles and removing stains.

To attract their early 20th century audiences, they had acrobats, musclemen and other performers hold their attention while the faux “doctor” worked his magic.

Taking the “Mc” out of McDonald’s

Big Mac attacks do not exist in El Salvador. Residents of that country have Don Mac attacks. And don’t look for a McDonald’s. You will only find a Donald’s.

Former 24-year franchisee Roberto Bukele has been in a lengthy legal battle with McDonald’s that dates back to the Arch Deluxe.

The battle over Reading Rainbow

A 2009 tweet from LeVar Burton gave fans of Reading Rainbow a glimmer of hope. The star of “Roots” and “Star Trek: The Next Generation” announced a revival of the popular show that encouraged people to read in every episode that aired from 1983 to 2006.

Eight years later, the show’s host and a public broadcaster seem to be on a different page.

How are trademarks, patents, copyrights created? P.2

Previously, we began looking at some of the general differences between patents, trademarks and copyrights. As we noted, these differences lie not only in the fact that these protections apply to different types of intellectual property, but also in the types of protection available under both state and federal law.

To begin with, one common misconception about copyrights, trademark, and patents is that federal registration is necessary in order to create intellectual property rights. This is not entirely true. Although federal registration is necessary in order to obtain protections under federal law—and these protections are certainly critical, in many cases—some intellectual property protections apply at the state level. The extent of these protections depends on the area of intellectual property, though.

How are trademarks, patents, copyrights created?

For many people, trademark, patent and copyright protection are something of a mystery beyond the general idea that they indicate different types of intellectual property protection. For those who don’t understand the ins and outs of intellectual property law, exactly what these protections do, and how they are created, is not often accurately understood.

Many people are aware that there is a federal agency dedicated to keeping track of trademark, copyright and patent protection. That agency is the United States Patent and Trademark Office. What exactly, though, are the protections offered through this agency and are these protections necessary to safeguard intellectual property? For those who create intellectual property, these are practically important questions.

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Robert Kaufman has been selected as a 2013 Top Rated Lawyer in ‘Commercial Litigation’ as will be published in the May issue of The American Lawyer & Corporate Counsel magazine.Alex Kaufman has been selected as a 2013 Top Rated Lawyer in ‘Commercial Litigation’ as will be published in the December issue of The American Lawyer & Corporate Counsel magazine.

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