BLT: March/April 2010



Business & Corporate

So Your Client Wants to Franchise Its Business? Practical Advice for Lawyers Embarking on Representing Franchisors

This article is aimed at attorneys who may seek to represent franchisors. The article provides practical tips and expert advice on both franchising law and the business of operating franchises, The authors walk the reader through the process from the formative stages (like deciding whether a franchise is appropriate) to drafting the legal documents that comprise a franchise agreement.

Business & Corporate

What's in a Name? A Lot: Trademark and Brand Protection Strategies for Franchisors

Since a franchisor's brand is often the most important aspect of a franchised business, careful consideration in selecting, registering, and protecting the brand's marks is integral to a franchisor's efforts to create a marketable commodity and generate value for the franchise system. This article provides an introductory overview of the legal considerations for selecting, registering, using, and protecting those marks, all of which are critical to the viability and longevity of any franchise brand.

Business & Corporate

Brand Licensing Programs: Exemptions—a Silver Lining in a Regulatory Cloud

This article cautions that a company developing a successful brand licensing program must pay attention to the cloud of federal and state franchise laws that may apply to the program. A company can easily have a brand licensing program declared a franchise under state or federal law if care is not taken. The authors walk the reader through various federal and state franchising provisions of which brand licensors must be aware.

Business & Corporate

Post-Domain Infringement: In Search of a Remedy

This article explores the protection afforded to trademark owners against unauthorized commercial use of their marks in third-level domain names. The author focuses in particular on trademark infringement via “vanity URLs” such as the personalized URLs that users can create on Facebook and Twitter. The article analyzes the applicability of several legal mechanisms including dispute resolution through Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the Anti-Cybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA), and the Lanham Act and concludes that none provides a satisfactory remedy, at present.


Business & Corporate


The author summarizes recent articles and reports of interest to the Business Lawyer. This month, the author has summarized: a report on law firm billing rates, an article on the slowdown in the filing of securities lawsuits, an article on the increasing use of technology in law firm management, an article on the reduction in law firm mergers, an article on new sources of venture capital funding, and an article on the increase in the applications received at Yale Law school.

Business & Corporate

KEEPING CURRENT: SEC revises executive comp and governance disclosure for 2010

On December 16, 2009, the SEC approved revised disclosure rules relating to executive compensation and corporate governance practices at public companies. The final rules cover compensation risk disclosure, stock and option valuation, compensation consultant fees, expanded disclosure about incumbent directors and director nominees, the board's role in oversight of the company's risk management process, and board leadership structure. The final rules also transfer the requirement to disclose the voting results of any matter submitted to shareholders for vote from Form 10-Q and Form 10-K to Form 8-K.