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Top Ten Internet Legal Mistakes-Losing the Farm

2. Losing the Farm
Liability: Companies which rely on the Internet for sales live or die by their legal counsel. One false step in the minefield of contracts or intellectual property protection can destroy a company that took years to develop. Whether it is losing a multi-million dollar trademark through misuse, binding the company to a perpetual contract or landing the company in the middle of a multi-million dollar lawsuit, failing to plot a proper course is a recipe for disaster. Indeed, a single patent or trademark may be the difference between a company’s success or failure in the marketplace. A single contract can tie up and indefinitely shelve your company’s most valuable asset. If you plot your course without experienced legal counsel by your side, it is only a matter of when, not if, disaster strikes.

Solution: Contracts and intellectual property portfolios are as varied as the companies that have them. As such, there is simply no “one size fits all” strategy. To plot the appropriate strategy, your company must develop specific plans and policies geared toward its own needs, intellectual property and strategic initiative. As for contracts, giving your company a way out of exclusive licensing arrangements, can prevent third parties from using extortion tactics to gain the upper hand or put your company out of business. Similarly, a well conceived portfolio protection plan, developed prior to the acquisition of new intellectual property is essential. Preparing a strategy beforehand reduces the costs, delays and potential hardships associated with remedial efforts to try and regain lost assets. Talk to your intellectual property attorney today to avoid many, many headaches tomorrow.

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