Sunday, July 6, 2008

Big Business (Part 2)

What the heck is a trademark?
and other legalities...

Ah yes, the boring side of business, otherwise known as "the I'll get to it later" stuff. However, the longer you procrastinate, the more likely you'll end up hurting yourself. For instance, did you know that once you come up with your oh-s0-brilliant company name, it's up for grabs to anyone until you file a "Fictitious Name Statement" otherwise known to the government, as a DBA (Doing Business As)? After you've selected your name, you need to head on down to the county clerk's office and search through their list of names on record. Once you're in the clear, go ahead and register the name for $10-$15. Then, you still need to have your dba name published in a recognized periodical. Go with a local newspaper for cost effectiveness.

When do I need the following?...
Trademark: you need one for your logo. This prohibits others from using any likeness to it, including colors, style and verbiage.
Copyright: for use if you're an author of literature, music, drama or other works that can be published.
Patent: for use if you've invented something tangible or a process. These can take YEARS to secure. Once the paperwork is filed, you can label as "patent pending."

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