Category Archives: Intellectual Property

How to Win in Intellectual Property Mediation in Los Angeles

Intellectual property attorneys often define “winning” in litigation as obtaining the best possible outcome for the client while minimizing the amount of harm to the client, given the particular circumstances involved in the case.  Sometimes this objective can be accomplished by using intellectual property mediation in Los Angeles.  While litigation has its place, not every dispute is best handled in that forum.  Intellectual property mediation in Los Angeles can result in a positive outcome for your client.

Although mediation can be used at any point in the process, it is particularly helpful to use early in the process because it helps to resolve an issue before the parties are entrenched in their respective positions.  It also helps to minimize legal expenses when employed early on.  For public companies, a key consideration at all times is to consider how a particular action may impact the marketplace.

While mediation is a process that is designed to help bring about a settlement of a case, there are certain strategies that you can use to increase the probability of obtaining a successful outcome for your client.

One principle strategy to utilize is that of preparation.  Even though mediation is a guided negotiation, strong preparation can help highlight the strengths of your case and mitigate its weaknesses.  If the other party supports a contradictory position, knowing the case and the law that is on your side can be paramount during mediation.  At the same time, you should be prepared to address any potential weaknesses in your case and be able to point to the cases or evidence that is on your side.  Likewise, making sure that your client presents well can ensure that the other side knows that you are willing and able to proceed with the case if necessary.  These steps can help ensure that the other side carefully considers the potential ramifications of litigation and weighs the alternative of settling the case in your client’s favor.

How an Intellectual Property Attorney in Ventura California Can Prepare for Mediation

Intellectual property attorneys in Ventura California are quickly becoming one of the fastest growing practitioners of mediation.  Intellectual property law lends itself to mediation and other forms of alternative dispute resolution due to the ability to keep parties out of the courtroom and provide workable solutions.  Intellectual property attorneys in Ventura California who thoroughly prepare for the mediation process are more likely to bring about a positive result in their clients’ cases than those who do not adequately prepare.

Well before mediation, intellectual property attorneys should thoroughly acquaint themselves with the case.  They should be aware of the nature of the intellectual property dispute and how it arose.  Additionally, they should have documents, photographs or other evidence on hand that supports their client’s position regarding his or her ownership interest and creation.

An intellectual property attorney can provide a summary of this information in the mediation brief.  Additionally, he or she should summarize the settlement offers that were made and rejected so that the mediator can start where previous negotiations left off.

Although mediation is much less formal than litigation, intellectual property attorneys should still perform many of the pre-trial tasks that they would prepare with litigation.  For example, they should research relevant statutes and case law to determine how cases with similar issues played out in court.  Some intellectual property attorneys will also conduct some discovery in order to better represent their client, including asking for communications between the parties, any relevant contracts and important testimony received through a deposition.  Intellectual property attorneys can then compile this information in the order that it would be presented at mediation.  This process helps familiarize the attorney with the legal issues and factual circumstances and substantiates the strength of the client’s case.

Characteristics in Mediators that Lead to Successful Intellectual Property Mediation in Los Angeles

Due to the complexity of intellectual property disputes and the time it takes to resolve them through litigation, many parties turn to intellectual property mediation in Los Angeles. The likelihood of success in intellectual property mediation in Los Angeles is directly linked to the mediator’s skillset. Some characteristics that are routinely part of a successful mediation include the mediator’s:

Ability to Gain Parties’ Confidence

Successful mediators have an uncanny ability to show that they are trustworthy individuals. It is vital for mediators to accomplish this goal because it sets the stage for the parties to be honest and openly express themselves to the mediator.  It also helps when the mediator brings a settlement proposal to each individual party to be able to objectively present it to the party without him or her feeling that the mediator is somehow trying to take advantage of the party.

Empathic

Although mediators must be neutral, they must still be able to express empathy to each party separately.  This allows the party to bond with the mediator, as well as trust him or her more. Additionally, it allows the mediator to ingratiate himself or herself to the party, making the entire process much smoother.

Strong Evaluative Skills

A mediator must be able to discern information quickly.  He or she should be able to evaluate whether a party will be likely to achieve his or her goals outside the mediation setting, such as through arbitration or litigation.  The mediator can weigh the strengths and weaknesses of a case and use this information to encourage agreement between the parties.  Additionally, an intellectual property mediator should be able to assess whether the parties may be willing to enter into side agreements to help resolve the current issue, such as a licensing agreement.

Arbitration: Path to Resolving Intellectual Property Disputes in Beverly Hills CA

Intellectual property disputes in Beverly Hills California often involve complex issues, such as patent infringement, copyright infringement and licensing disputes. In order to resolve intellectual property disputes in Beverly Hills California, parties may turn to the process of arbitration.

In arbitration, the parties can decide who the decision maker is, rather than relying on a random judge and jury assigned to the case. This allows them to pick someone with a background in patent law or other applicable areas. Arbitrators who have the requisite technical knowledge and experience can benefit the process by skipping any steps necessary to educate the arbitrator on the nature of the industry and issues at hand so that the arbitrator can focus on the actual points of contention. This process also allows the parties to argue their case without having to simplify complex issues.

Many intellectual property disputes are time-sensitive. One party may allege that the other is infringing on its intellectual property disputes. As such, it is important that the case be quickly be resolved so that the parties do not stay in limbo. By the time a case makes its way through the court system, the technology involved in a case may be obsolete by the time it is resolved in that forum. Arbitration can help resolve a case in a fraction of the time. Additionally, appeals are limited in the arbitration context so this can further cut years off of the potential longevity of the case.

The parties have greater control of the process than they do in litigation. For example, they can agree to limit the scope of discovery, which also helps on the path of a timely resolution. Less time in the legal world also usually equates to less expense, which is important to both parties.

Why an Intellectual Property Attorney in Ventura CA Should Consider Arbitration

While an intellectual property attorney in Ventura California may be accustomed to talking to clients about possible litigation when a problem arises, this may not always be the best approach to the problem. Intellectual property attorneys in Ventura California may deal with issues involving someone else encroaching on a client’s intellectual property or with a client being named as a defendant in a lawsuit of this nature. Arbitration provides a number of benefits to attorneys and clients.

Timing is extremely important in intellectual property disputes. If a case is tied up in litigation and one of the parties continues to receive profits from a product or creation, this party may wind up having to pay these profits to the other party for the years while litigation is ongoing. Arbitration allows the parties to quickly resolve their dispute so that they can both pursue business opportunities. At the same time attorneys can take on a case of this nature without having as much of a commitment as a case involving anticipated litigation.

Another disadvantage to litigation is the possibility of having the decision overturned on appeal. This can be particularly problematic for an attorney who brought the case on a contingency fee basis or who represented the party who won a significant award. Typically, an appeal will delay payment to the attorneys in these situations. Arbitration offers more finality to an award by having only isolated reasons for appeal.

One of the benefits of having intellectual property protection is being able to exclusively have control of the technology or idea protected by a patent, copyright, trademark or other intellectual property device. However, litigation tends to expose trade secrets and other confidential information about businesses and products. Arbitration allows businesses and private parties to retain their privacy through a confidential proceeding. Being able to provide this alternative to your clients who are particularly concerned about privacy can create a positive impression with them.

How to Prepare for Intellectual Property Mediation in Los Angeles

While many individuals may believe that there is only way to solve intellectual property disputes – litigation – this is often not the case. Individuals and businesses may be able to peacefully resolve their claims through the process of intellectual property mediation in Los Angeles. The key benefits to mediation are that the parties can resolve their issues more quickly and more affordably than they would likely be able to through litigation. Below are three key ways that you can make the most of your session for intellectual property mediation in Los Angeles.

Provide Documents

At the heart of an intellectual property dispute, there are usually key documents. This may be a contract between the parties or a patent that is being infringed upon. Provide any other documents that can help the mediator understand the issues involved in the case. Sometimes documents can provide a clearer picture than that which would be available by two emotionally-driven parties.

Identify Your Interests

Sometimes the interests that a client says to his or her attorney are not his or her real interests. For example, a client may believe that another party is infringing on his or her patent. While he or she may tell the attorney that he or she wants an injunction to stop the other party, he or she may really want to establish a licensing deal to profit from the other’s use of the intellectual property. It is also important to identify the negative impact of litigation, such as the increased time and expense involved.

Select the Best Mediator

The most direct correlation for a successful mediation is a successful mediator. Be sure that you select someone who has a background in intellectual property law. This complex area of the law requires someone familiar with the rules and procedures associated with it.

Intellectual Property Disputes in Los Angeles CA and ADR

With its hub of technological companies and access to wealth, intellectual property disputes in Los Angeles California are not uncommon. Parties may not agree as to the extent of a patent or may believe that they are well within their rights to utilize certain intellectual property. While some lawyers specialize in litigating intellectual property disputes in Los Angeles California, alternative dispute resolution offers a number of advantages over litigation.

In a typical case of intellectual property disputes, the moving party is subject to certain risks, including the potential to have his or her patent narrowed or eliminated altogether. This is disheartening when considering the time and expense that is commonly executed to secure a patent in the first place. Likewise, the defending party is at risk of being forced to pay a sizable judgment or to stop using the intellectual property, which may cause this individual to go out of business.

Rather than litigate such issues, parties may choose to pursue mediation of their intellectual property disputes. This option is preferable if the parties wish to maintain a positive relationship after the issue is resolved. Additionally, this option provides the parties with the opportunity to devise a settlement that meets all of their needs. For example, a licensing agreement may be born out of a mediation conference. When handling intellectual property, it is important that the mediator be familiar with this complex area of law.

Arbitration is another potential option. It is similar to litigation but is not as rigid in its application of evidence rules and the process. Parties who want to quickly resolve the claim without having to invest as much money as litigation, would likely incur may choose this option. Individuals can present their case in front of an objective decision maker and have the decision be just as binding as a court decision. Arbitrators who handle intellectual property disputes should pursue ongoing training so that they are aware of the latest developments in this ever-changing aspect of the law.

Benefits of Intellectual Property Mediation in Beverly Hills CA

When you are facing an intellectual property case in Beverly Hills CA, one route to consider taking is mediation, or alternative dispute resolution. Mediation involves both parties in a dispute coming to the table with a neutral third party to find a resolution that is agreeable to both parties—all outside of the courtroom.

Mediation, whenever possible, is a great choice in disputes and offers many benefits, including privacy (discussions and work sessions are kept private and not part of court documents) less time involved in court dates, trials and preparation, as well as ease of ending the dispute as amicably as possible outside of a trial.

Trials are expensive. From hourly attorneys billing both parties, depositions, trial materials, expert witnesses and other related court costs add up quickly and take its toll on personal and business finances.

Additionally, potentially lengthy trials demand opportunity costs, which is the value placed on what you could be pursuing if you weren’t embroiled in court case. For business owners, the opportunities to further build and grow their businesses are lost to the time spent in trial. Similarly, individuals in litigation lose out on employment opportunity and time spent with families and friends.

Also important to take into consideration are emotional costs. There are people out in the world who thrive on the drama and sense of conflict inherent with court cases, but the majority of us find it stressful and exhausting. While mediation isn’t a cure all for every case, it can help businesses and individual cut down the financial, opportunistic, and emotional costs of court trials.

How Can Mediation Save California Intellectual Property Attorneys and Clients Time?

Mediation is the best option for trial cases, as it saves California intellectual property attorneys and clients’ time, money and uncertainty. As an attorney, being able to flag cases with potential for resolution through mediation can save you time and energy. The mediator’s job is to help the parties reach a mutually acceptable solution.

Mediation can save time and uncertainty by avoiding going to court. It takes a simple few phone calls and/or emails to contact all parties and their lawyers to select a mediator and to schedule mediation. The location should be at neutral site to avoid any implications of bias or favoritism. There is also a memo included that involves a synopsis of the case and all supportive evidence and witnesses for the mediator to examine and help the parties consider options.

Keeping your client from going through the aggravation of court can be beneficial not just for them but for you, too. All too often, some clients don’t realize the amount of work and time required to prepare case for trial, or how long it can take to present their case in the court system. Being upfront about the potential for resolving the case outside of court can allow all persons involve avoid the challenges and uncertainties associated with litigation.

Mediation can also save all parties a good amount of money. An intellectual property attorney should work to help clients resolve the dispute in as a short timeframe as possible which incidentally is usually the least expensive way as well.

Dealing with Intellectual Property Infringement in Emerging Markets

As the world grows more and more interconnected and interdependent, it’s easier for more and more businesses of even moderate size and budgetary reach to do business on an international scale. While this opens up the world markets and the possibilities of profits and revenues far beyond what a similarly-sized company might have expected even just a decade ago, it also brings with it increased challenges, especially concerning intellectual property in emerging markets that may end up requiring copyright infringement arbitration in various jurisdictions including California.

Challenges of the Emerging Market

There are several challenges to intellectual property rights in emerging markets:

  • Discovery: infringement of intellectual property rights such as copyrights, trademarks and patents can often go undetected for some time in emerging markets because of the deep understanding of the culture and the market itself becomes increasing important.
  • Lack of cultural protections: Some markets exist in cultures where intellectual property such as copyright is not as revered or respected as in the United States.
  • Lack of legal protections: Many emerging markets have not yet developed the robust legal mechanisms required to effectively combat intellectual property violations, making copyright infringement mediation and arbitration often the only viable option.

Using California Copyright Infringement Arbitration

In many cases, launching arbitration in California over copyright infringement is the best possible approach, as the legal system in the emerging market may not be reliable, and arbitration is often a low-cost but effective way to both highlight and expose infringement and get real satisfaction concerning a resolution to the problem. Furthermore, arbitration awards are often enforceable in the US against foreign infringers which is particularly important for emerging markets. Where arbitration is an agreed upon vehicle for resolution, disputes can often be faster and less expensive than litigation.