We provide comprehensive legal services relevant to developing and protecting your brands, including: 

 

Trademark Law

At the core of brand development and protection is trademark law.  We help clients develop and protect their valuable brands by using innovative, cost-effective trademark development, maintenance, and protection strategies.  We currently manage over 500 trademarks in over 40 jurisdictions, including emerging wine markets in China, Canada, Mexico, Macau and Hong Kong.  Our services include all aspects of trademark selection, clearance, worldwide registration, monitoring, protection, trademark infringement prosecution and defense.   

 

Copyright Law

While trademarks grant exclusive rights to your brand and prohibit use of confusingly similar marks, copyrights grant rights to the "creative expression" used to build your brand.  In the wine, beer and spirits industries, copyright issues often arise when a business uses the artwork of another, like a photo on a label.  Our services include copyright clearances, differentiation, transformative and fair use, public domain analysis, work-for-hire agreements, assignments, licenses, and infringement defense and prosecution. 

 

BRAND & Winery SALES & ACQUISITIONS

Brands have a life of their own.  When the time is right to buy or sell a brand or winery, we provide a full range of transactional services including working with valuation experts to accurately identify brand and asset value, conducting due diligence, and drafting and negotiating all agreements related to the transaction.    

 

Content Licensing

Acquiring content from third parties for use on labels, advertisements or promotional campaigns can be an effective way to help build and define a brand.  We have acquired and negotiated hundreds of valuable content licenses for artwork, photographs, film clips, music, and more.  

 

DISPUTE RESOLUtion

While we work hard to avoid litigation for our clients, when it becomes necessary we aggressively defend  and enforce our clients' valuable brands whether in a court of law or arbitration proceeding.  We are admitted to practice in all state and federal courts in California as well as the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.  We have also successfully arbitrated and mediated many matters before both JAMS and AAA.  

 

PUBLICITY RIGHTS LAW

Each person has the exclusive right to the use of his or her own persona for commercial purposes.  In the alcoholic beverages and hospitality industries, many vintners, winemakers, brewers, distillers and chefs have valuable publicity rights that can be licensed and generate significant revenue.   We can help license your publicity rights for revenue or protect them from infringement.   

 

Business Contracts

In addition to the above areas, we draft, negotiate, defend, and enforce business contracts relating to brand or entity  ownership, including work-for-hire, partnerships, joint ventures, and operating agreements.  

 

More about our Notable Cases and Transactions