With the increased legalization of marijuana for medicinal, as well as recreational, use across 23 states and the District of Columbia, it comes as no surprise that cannabis is becoming big business. By 2019, it’s estimated that the marijuana industry could reach annual revenues exceeding $11 billion
There’s even a term for it, canna-business. The rapid growth of the medical and recreational cannabis industry has resulted in a wide variety of businesses directly and indirectly related to the sale, support, distribution and consumption of marijuana. There are growers, dispensaries, accessory makers, bakers, bars and innumerable collateral goods (mints, tea, lip gloss), making legalized marijuana one of the fastest growing industries in America today.
TOP TEN CHECK POINTS FOR SETTING UP A FLORIDA COMPANY
1. Select the proper legal entity for your business, whether it's a limited partnership (LP), a limited liability company (LLC), a corporation or a professional association (PA).
2. Search and apply for federal trademark registration
of the brand name you want to use in connection with your goods and/or services.
3. Prepare and file custom Articles of Organization (for an LLC) or Articles of Incorporation (for a corporation or PA), with the Florida Department of State.
4. Obtain your company's Employer Identification Number (EIN). This is the company's tax ID number and will be required to open a business bank account.
5. Register your Fictitious (D/B/A) Name. If your trade name is different than your legal company name, you must file a Fictitious Name registration with the Department of State.
6. Prepare and file with the Internal Rev...
This month, we consider a little known trademark designation know as Trademark Geographical Indications. What exactly is a Geographical Indication (GI), how are they protected and how do they differ from ordinary trademarks? We turned to WIPO, the World Intellectual Property Organization
, for some answers and also share some common Geographical indication examples.
What is a Trademark Geographical Indication?
A geographical indication is a sign used on products that have a specific geographical origin and possess qualities or a reputation that are due to that origin. In order to function as a GI, a sign must identify a product as originating in a given place. In addition, the qualities, characteristics or reputation of the product should be essentially due to the place of origin. Since the qualities depend on the geographical place of production, there is a clear link between the product and i...
If you have, or are starting, a business, there are several legal documents and contracts you may encounter in the early stages of your company. Having the appropriate agreements in place will ensure your interests and property are protected as you delve into the business of building relationships with co-owners, employees, contractors, third-party vendors and possibly, investors. Here are a few of the most common documents and contracts new business owners should consider in their legal arsenal.
Florida Limited Liability Company (LLC) Operating Agreement
An Operating Agreement is the governing document for a Florida limited liability company (LLC). It is a comprehensive company agreement covering ownership interests, voting rights, adding or removing members, selling or transferring interests, and succession planning, to name a few.
Florida Corporation Shareholders’ Agreement
A Shareholders’ (or Stockholders’) Agreement is the governin...
One of the basic principles of trademark law in the United States is that the first party to adopt and use
a mark has the right to continued, exclusive use
of that mark in connection with their goods and/or services, and as such, they may prevent others from using the same mark or something similar that may cause confusion among prospective customers. However, the Lanham Trademark Act contains a provision under which an eligible trademark applicant may request issuance of a registration concurrent
with the registration of a conflicting mark. This is known as a "concurrent use
What makes a city a great entrepreneurial hub? What does it take to attract top talent, incubate home grown technologies and launch innovative new ideas into the business stratosphere? These are the kinds of questions considered at StartUp City: Miami
, hosted by Atlantic Magazine and the Knight Foundation and held at the fantastic New World Center on Miami Beach last week. I keep telling everyone I meet and everyone who asks me "why Miami?..." Miami is on the cusp of becoming the next great American city. We have beautiful weather and the beach, but there's something else truly exciting going on here. In the years since I've called South Florida home, there's a new energy, a buzzing entrepreneurial spirit that's taking hold of the city like never before. Sure, Miami has always had an extremely high concentration of small businesses and entrepreneurship. But this is different. This is 21st century entrepreneu...
What is an Intent-to-Use Trademark Application and is it worth your while (and money) to file one?
Trademark owners who are not yet using their trademarks in commerce or who do not have proper specimens showing use of their trademark may file an Intent to Use trademark application with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). The Intent-to-Use application is based on Section 1(b) of the Trademark Act. The applicant must include a sworn statement of their bona fide intention to use the mark and must begin actual use of the mark in commerce before the USPTO will allow trademark registration.
Once the applicant makes actual use of their mark in commerce, the Applicant must notify the USPTO of such use. An Amendment to Allege Use may be filed any time between the filing date of the application and the date the USPTO approves the mark for publication. If an Amendment to Allege Use is not filed and the ITU mark passes the USPTO Examiner's initial review and publicati...