Five-minute general counsel: A little trademark search saves a lot of headache

By Rick Colosimo / February 6, 2017 /

This WSJ article describes some of the problems that small businesses have faced with names. The most significant one, from my perspective, is the trademark lawsuit that cause the cookie company to change its name after being featured on the “Rachael Ray Show.” What a waste of potential marketing value! Over the years, I’ve serviced…

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Five-minute general counsel: Answers to incorporation questions

By Rick Colosimo / February 8, 2012 /

Several years ago, I switched my law practice from mass torts (plane crashes and shipwrecks) in New York City to corporate law at a large Silicon Valley law firm. As a result of that experience and clients I worked with in the years following the dotcom bust, I developed a number of simplifying rules about…

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Five-minute general counsel: What is your share of a joint venture?

By Rick Colosimo / March 21, 2011 /

“Joint venture” is a sloppy term used to describe a number of different business operations. The important thing to remember is that it is too vague to be meaningful legally. A project that is called a joint venture might legitimately be structured like any of these: a brand new entity with shared ownership a subsidiary…

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Five-minute general counsel: What’s in a seed round termsheet?

By Rick Colosimo / February 1, 2011 /

Here’s a common set of angel-investor questions regarding a standard seed round term sheet for a tech company: Why are the shares divided into preferred and common? Why does the preferred stock have a limited “1x” return? What will happen with liquidation preferences in future rounds? What will happen with dividends? Does the preferred stock…

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