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Keep it Legal Blog

Letters of Intent (LOIs): What Buyers and Sellers Need to Know

Whether you’re looking to sell your business or acquire a new one, the letter of intent (LOI) is a critical early step in the transaction process. This non-binding document lays the groundwork for the deal, outlining the key terms and conditions that both parties agree to before proceeding to more intensive due diligence and negotiations. From the purchase price and financing structure to contingencies and exclusivity periods, the LOI serves as a roadmap for the final purchase agreement. It’s an essential tool for ensuring both the buyer and seller are aligned on the essential elements of the transaction. Some key…

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New Trademark Scams

I was recently alerted to new scams that are plaguing U.S. trademark applicants. I wrote about trademark scams way back in 2012 (here) and 2016 (here). Unfortunately the problem hasn’t gone away. Here are two recent issues I’ve heard of: 1. Email Scam. After a trademark application is filed, the applicant (meaning, the person or company who owns the trademark, not the filing attorney) is contacted in writing stating that the trademark application was incomplete, and that a conflicting application has been filed by someone else. The scam email looks something like this: I hope this email finds you well….

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FinCEN’s Beneficial Ownership Information Reporting Requirement

As of January 1, 2024, the U.S. Treasury Department’s¬†Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) has imposed a new obligation on almost all corporations and LLCs doing business in the U.S. Companies that fall under this obligation (“reporting companies”) must file reports containing identifying information of certain individuals, with a limited number of exceptions. This is an ongoing obligation – meaning, it’s not necessarily a one-time filing, these reports are required when certain changes are made to the company. In this post, I’ll go over some of the details. Which Companies Does This Apply To? The rule does not apply to companies…

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New York Times v. OpenAI and Microsoft Copyright Case

A few days ago, the New York Times filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against OpenAI (creators of ChatGPT) and Microsoft (who own part of OpenAI). The full complaint can be read here. This is an extremely complex case, addressing arguably novel issues in copyright law. Meaning, depending on how you look at it, the court may have to consider legal issues that have never been previously addressed. Note that the U.S. Copyright Act was written in 1976, before OpenAI, ChatGPT, or the World Wide Web existed. Ideally, Congress would step in and pass sensible legislation addressing copyright issues as they…

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