On Wednesday, March 22, 2017, the United States Supreme Court decided Star Athletica v. Varsity Brands. This is a case where a reader can rightly be surprised at the fact the case is based upon cheerleaders uniforms and yet the case strengthens an important rule related to Copyright law. Specifically, the question was based upon applied art and useful articles. When is the design of a useful article within Copyright protection?
The old saying goes there is no such thing as bad publicity. This may be true, however, another axiom proclaims that exposure kills. In essence, the idea that a person’s likeness has value is inherent in both of these sayings. The more you are in the public the more your image is worth, yet if you do not curate your likeness the value drops due to ease of access. In law, these concepts are a core idea within the right of publicity.
In the course of networking and meeting potential clients, one of the most common refrains is a concern about the cost of hiring an attorney. Why spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on an Attorney for a contract when it is cheaper online? Or when the person feels like they could write their own contracts themselves? Here are a couple of thoughts on the subject.
Oral Agreements, as a matter of law, are binding upon the parties. These handshake agreements are thought to be strong and important ways to create relationships while expressing a certain amount of trust. The question is what happens when those strong relationships fracture and break apart.
A written contract is an agreement between the parties and creates the legal duties owed from one party to the other. However, these duties are not permanent, they are changeable, modifiable. These modifications can be intentional or accidental. Here is a brief discussion of how a contract can be modified.