Trademark dispute pits wine maker against state government | The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein

Trademark dispute pits wine maker against state government On behalf of Peter C. Bronstein of The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein posted in Intellectual Property on Friday, November 18, 2016. The business courts of California have their fair share of intellectual property disputes. These may concern issues over copyright infringement, a trademark dispute, patent infringement, trade secrets or other related matters. An unusual trademark battle is occurring in another state right now, and it may go down to the wire before it is settled or decided by way of a jury trial.A winery produced a wine that is called "What Exit Wine," which borrows from the idea of the state's exit signs that appear on the state turnpike that runs the length of the state. It designed the logo to look just like the actual exit signs that appear on the turnpike. When contacted by the state agency, the business asserted that it had a right to use the design as its logo despite that the state already had obtained a trademark to it. The winery and the New Jersey Turnpike Authority have been going back and forth on the dispute for the past year. The small winery brought the matter to a determination by filing a declaratory judgment action against the state agency. Such an action requests the court to issue an order declaring essentially the legal rights and responsibilities of the parties.The court will decide whether the winery has a right to design a logo that borrows themes and designs already incorporated into the highway exit sign. The business explains that it was using the theme to raise congenial talk among the state's citizens. Presumably, they will talk cordially about their respective highway exit locations.The plaintiff in this trademark dispute has argued to the court that the

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Producers of the Great Comet of 1812 settle contract litigation | The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein

Producers of the Great Comet of 1812 settle contract litigation On behalf of Peter C. Bronstein of The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein posted in Contract Disputes on Friday, November 11, 2016. Whenever business entities enter into contractual agreements, the initial hopes for the contracts are generally seen through rose-colored glasses. Usually, the parties who have signed a new agreement focus on high hopes for the project. That so-called honeymoon period, however, almost always ends, and a flow of contractual misinterpretations can often lead the parties into strong disagreements and, ultimately, into contract litigation, which is a common development for many contract disputes in California.This process concerning contractual obligations comes up in all types of industries. One of those, the world of entertainment, has its share. This includes the worlds of both the Broadway productions and the off-Broadway performances. Both have a flow of new contracts arising each day and somewhat checkered records for making most of them work with no disputes along the way. The most recent example occurred when a company called Ars Nova sued commercial producers Howard and Janet Kagan. The lawsuit attempted to compel the producers of Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812 to display the Ars Nova name at the top of the playbill for the hit musical . The suit claims that the Kagans must insert the Ars Nova name because Ars Nova is an off-Broadway company that originally developed the show and produced its first outing.Ars Nova spokespersons commented that the case was important to assuring healthy associations with its brand. For the dance group, the importance lay in publicizing that the play was originated by the Ars Nova group. He stated that the imposition of the correct facts of the contract was a plus for both parties. Prior to the lawsuit, the playbill listed

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November 2016 Archives | Los Angeles Business Law Blog

November 2016 ArchivesContract dispute interfering with the airing of show's season 2 On behalf of Peter C. Bronstein of The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein posted in Contract Disputes on Monday, November 28, 2016. California tends to thrive on entertainment industry contract disputes. The laid-back slower pace of life here is just that: a perception, and probably a wrong one. In the entertainment industry, the stresses of business dealings, including when there is a contract dispute, are even more hectic than in other states because of the intense demands made on all the participants. In one current example, the production itself is taking place in another state, but at least one of the disputing entities is from this state. Continue reading Contract dispute interfering with the airing of show's season 2... Tags: Contract Disputes Consult experienced counsel early in a contract dispute On behalf of Peter C. Bronstein of The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein posted in Business Litigation on Thursday, November 24, 2016. In California and elsewhere, two business entities often find themselves in an agreed joint venture, a partnership or even a series of repeating business transactions that the companies find to be profitable. Generally, at the core of the relationship is a written contract or a series of writings constituting a legal contract. While the profitable transactions may continue for extended periods, there often comes a time where a twist or turn of events causes a problem for both businesses, leading to a contract dispute. Continue reading Consult experienced counsel early in a contract dispute... Tags: Business Litigation Trademark dispute pits wine maker against state government On behalf of Peter C. Bronstein of The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein posted in Intellectual Property on Friday, November 18, 2016. The business courts of California have

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Contract dispute interfering with the airing of show’s season 2 | The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein

Contract dispute interfering with the airing of show's season 2 On behalf of Peter C. Bronstein of The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein posted in Contract Disputes on Monday, November 28, 2016. California tends to thrive on entertainment industry contract disputes. The laid-back slower pace of life here is just that: a perception, and probably a wrong one. In the entertainment industry, the stresses of business dealings, including when there is a contract dispute, are even more hectic than in other states because of the intense demands made on all the participants. In one current example, the production itself is taking place in another state, but at least one of the disputing entities is from this state.The show is a reality presentation of the life of a family of seven achondroplastic dwarfs. The parent company putting on the production is Discovery Communications LLC. The producer of the show is the California-based LMNO Cable Group. The show had been approved for production of a second season when contract conflicts began to emerge in public. LMNO filed a federal lawsuit against Discovery this past summer, claiming that Discovery had agreed to pay $2.64 million for the next eight episodes but chose instead to end its agreement while still owing $632,000. LMNO had produced the second season but is holding on the footage. LMNO's counsel alleges that everything will be fine if Discovery pays what it owes. In response, Discovery insists that it paid for the productions but that it needs the footage to be handed over.LMNO's claim in this contract dispute is apparently not pristine. The company admitted in its lawsuit that it was the victim of an embezzlement scheme in late 2015. Discovery responds that this led to a revelation that LMNO was "systematically defrauding" the network. A federal judge

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Contract dispute between oil barons goes up to $1 billion | The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein

Contract dispute between oil barons goes up to $1 billion On behalf of Peter C. Bronstein of The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein posted in Contract Disputes on Friday, November 4, 2016. Contract disputes in California and other states can be small incidental matters dealing with a small amount of damages or they can be massive battles between big-money companies that may involve up to a billion dollars or more in damages. A case involving the latter type of contract dispute is being set for a jury trial, with disputes over oil contract interests and revenue rights that is potentially worth up to $1 billion. The plaintiff is Mesa Petroleum, and the defendants are four exploration and production companies.Two legendary oil names are involved, with Mesa Petroleum being owned by T. Boone Pickens and one of the four defendants being the J. Cleo Thompson oil conglomerate. The critical contractual terms were purportedly discussed and/or modified by T. Boone Pickens and J. Cleo Thompson personally, two oil industry pioneers. Mesa's main claim is that the parties were signatories to an investment contract giving Mesa the right to invest in various acquisitions of the defendants on an ongoing basis over a five-year period. Mesa claims that it accepted all offers that were presented but that the defendants hid most of them, did not reveal the drilling of at least 166 wells, and kept the revenues and royalties for themselves. That allegedly resulted in the defendants' pocketing nearly $1 billion in profits due and owing to Mesa. Jury selection will start shortly in the case in a Texas state court. The defendants are arguing that Mesa manifested an intention, through word and deed, not to be involved in the transactions any longer.It is alleged that Mr. Pickens told Mr. Thompson that he

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Consult experienced counsel early in a contract dispute | The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein

Consult experienced counsel early in a contract dispute On behalf of Peter C. Bronstein of The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein posted in Business Litigation on Thursday, November 24, 2016. In California and elsewhere, two business entities often find themselves in an agreed joint venture, a partnership or even a series of repeating business transactions that the companies find to be profitable. Generally, at the core of the relationship is a written contract or a series of writings constituting a legal contract. While the profitable transactions may continue for extended periods, there often comes a time where a twist or turn of events causes a problem for both businesses, leading to a contract dispute.They turn to the contract and cannot find a resolution. What started out as a good working relationship, profitable to the business and perhaps even responsible for keeping several workers busy and employed, has now gotten mired in the quicksand of confusion and conflict. The best and most efficient way out of this wrong turn is to consult with an attorney experienced in handling contract disputes between businesses. One of the problems that may arise is that the language in a contract may not always rise to encompass every factual transaction or deviation from the norm. In addition, business practices, innovative technology, new inventions and a myriad of other unavoidable changes may make the contract partly obsolete. If the company did not have a business attorney contributing to contract formations in prior years, the language may prove too loose and imprecise to pin down a resolution to the dispute that comes up.If the contract dispute must be submitted to mediation or arbitration per the terms of the agreement, then that procedure in most instances must be followed under California law. Regardless of such provisions, however, a

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Several solutions available in intellectual property litigation | The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein

Several solutions available in intellectual property litigation On behalf of Peter C. Bronstein of The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein posted in Intellectual Property on Friday, October 14, 2016. If a person owns a copyright or trademark, other individuals, unfortunately, may use the copyright or trademark without permission. In some cases, they might use a similar mark. In this situation, an attorney who specializes in intellectual property rights can guide him or her on how to protect his or her trademark or copyright in California.After a person finds out that his or her trademark or copyright has been used illegally, the individual can send out a cease and desist letter to the party committing the wrongdoing. In some cases, the person who has illegally used a trademark or copyright acknowledges this and agrees to quit doing it in the future. However, this is not enough in other cases, which means the intervention of a lawyer is necessary. A case involving copyright or trademark infringement can be fought in a federal court. The person with the registered copyright or trademark can get an injunction and collect any attorney fees that have been paid as damages. Other remedies are also available.In some intellectual property litigation scenarios in the state of California, the person whose trademark or copyright has been used illegally can have the other party's mark canceled through the U.S. Patent and Trademark Appeals Board. No matter which route the plaintiff decides to take, it is necessary for his or her legal representation to be aggressive and persistent. An attorney who is experienced and puts the needs and interests of the plaintiff first may help the person to obtain his or her desired outcome. Tags: Intellectual Property Related Posts: Intellectual property litigation gets a boost from Supreme Court, Companies battle over

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October 2016 Archives | Los Angeles Business Law Blog

October 2016 ArchivesContract dispute halts health care service to 750,000 customers On behalf of Peter C. Bronstein of The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein posted in Contract Disputes on Friday, October 28, 2016. When a hospital network and a major insurer of patients get into a contract dispute, it usually results in significant hardship to the patients who want to use health care facilities that are in the network. This type of contract dispute occurs periodically in California and other states. It is presently taking place in another state between Tenet Healthcare and Humana. Continue reading Contract dispute halts health care service to 750,000 customers... Tags: Contract Disputes Business disputes come from a variety of sources On behalf of Peter C. Bronstein of The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein posted in Business Litigation on Friday, October 21, 2016. Few California companies can keep their doors open without encountering issues with customers, vendors or other companies. Business disputes can come from a variety of sources. The question is whether they can be resolved amicably or if litigation will be required. Continue reading Business disputes come from a variety of sources... Tags: Business Litigation Several solutions available in intellectual property litigation On behalf of Peter C. Bronstein of The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein posted in Intellectual Property on Friday, October 14, 2016. If a person owns a copyright or trademark, other individuals, unfortunately, may use the copyright or trademark without permission. In some cases, they might use a similar mark. In this situation, an attorney who specializes in intellectual property rights can guide him or her on how to protect his or her trademark or copyright in California. Continue reading Several solutions available in intellectual property litigation... Tags: Intellectual Property Claims service loses business litigation claim based on fraud

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Contract dispute halts health care service to 750,000 customers | The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein

Contract dispute halts health care service to 750,000 customers On behalf of Peter C. Bronstein of The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein posted in Contract Disputes on Friday, October 28, 2016. When a hospital network and a major insurer of patients get into a contract dispute, it usually results in significant hardship to the patients who want to use health care facilities that are in the network. This type of contract dispute occurs periodically in California and other states. It is presently taking place in another state between Tenet Healthcare and Humana.Tenet owns a network of hospitals and Humana insures about 750,000 customers in that state. The parties have a contract that is expiring and must be re-negotiated. However, they cannot agree on new terms for going forward. Tenet contends that Humana has obstructed negotiations and is placing its self-interest over the needs of its members. In fact, the large number of customers insured by Humana have been unable to get the benefits of their insurance coverage with respect to Tenet facilities and physicians since Oct. 1.   Humana counters that it has a responsibility to assure that its contracted facilities provide quality and cost-effective care. What that means has not been revealed in public and remains for now a matter for ongoing negotiations between the hospital network and the insurer. Meanwhile, Humana's 750,000 customers are no longer able to use Tenet's hospitals.Emergency services are apparently still available in some cases. The customers will have to pay higher out-of-pocket bills in order to use the Tenet hospitals, doctors, urgent care facilities and other services. The contract dispute affects those with Medicare, Medicaid, employment group plans and other customers. Given the importance of health care facilities and physicians to the welfare of the public, it is imperative that the parties negotiate

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Claims service loses business litigation claim based on fraud | The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein

Claims service loses business litigation claim based on fraud On behalf of Peter C. Bronstein of The Law Office of Peter C. Bronstein posted in Business Litigation on Friday, October 7, 2016. Sometimes it appears that businesses are as vulnerable to a case of buyer's remorse as anyone else. That seems to be a factor at play in a business litigation matter in which a company that purchased a California adjusting business turned around and sued the acquired company in 2011 for fraud. The acquiring company, IAS Claim Services, sued the Anaheim-based adjusting firm for allegedly misrepresenting the size of its customer base, therefore causing IAS to grossly overpay for the purchase.A United States District Court Judge recently ruled, however, that IAS had not carried its case. Instead, the court ordered the plaintiff company to pay more than $1.6 million to the adjusting firm on its breach of contract counterclaim. IAS had been asking for the return of a $2.4 million down payment it had made to the adjuster and cancellation of a $1.2 million note. IAS also asked for punitive damages. The federal court judge sitting in San Antonio had written in an August Order that the parties should have settled out of court. He included a picture of Abraham Lincoln in the Order and quoted Lincoln as saying that litigation should be discouraged and that people should compromise whenever they can. The extra advice and historical commentary are unusual to say the least, and most businesses are not given lessons in civic responsibility when they pursue a litigation matter.The practical meaning of the court's decision in this business litigation matter, however, is that the contention that the California company provided false customer information was not proved. IAS did not carry its burden of proving its allegations by the

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