Recent Posts by Michael Thomas

Free Speech Overpowers Trademark Disparagement Clause, Says SCOTUS

The Slants case finally reached a conclusion when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the Lanham Act’s § 2(a) (15 U.S.C. § 1052(a)), which barred trademarks that may “disparage . . . or bring . . . into contemp[t] or disrepute” any “persons, living or dead,” violates the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment. As previously…
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Circuit Split Widens After 11th Circuit Copyright Registration Ruling

As previously reported in this blog, federal circuits are badly split on when registration of a copyright occurs, which is an issue that ultimately determines whether a plaintiff can sue for infringement. The Eleventh Circuit in Fourth Estate Public Benefit Corporation v. Wall-Street.com, LLC reaffirmed the “registration approach,” under which an actual certificate of registration…
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CA Secretary of State Unveils New “Bizfile CA” Portal

Today the California Secretary of State launched a new online portal called "Bizfile California" which will make some tasks associated with business formation a little easier. Despite its location in arguably the tech capital of the world, the California Secretary of State still relies primarily on snail mail to conduct tasks such as forming an…
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Small Business Update: Ruling in ADA Case Could Impact Websites

In one of the most definitive decisions yet on the issue of website accessibility standards and violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), a judge presiding over a bench trial in the Southern District of Florida rendered a verdict for the plaintiffs in Gil v. Winn Dixie, CV 16-23020-CIV (2017 WL 2547242). The issue…
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