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Intellectual Property, Restrictive Covenants, and More
The First Step for Successful, Sustainable, and Scalable Businesses
Protecting intellectual property is the first step to establishing a successful, sustainable, and scalable business. However, protecting your brand and/or unique cannabis-related products and processes is notoriously difficult and complex in the cannabis space. Further, the practice of intellectual property law as applicable to cannabis businesses is fraught with errors which – if made – can result in severe penalties, including the loss of an entire business.
Because of the complex and nuanced interactions of federal, state, and local laws, as well as the private interests of other competing companies, cannabis businesses across the country routinely turn to Heidi Urness Law before, throughout, and after the development of protectable interests. We work closely with many existing cannabis businesses (including marijuana, hemp, and CBD, among others), entrepreneurs, and emerging businesses to help them understand intellectual property protections, risks, pitfalls, and how to best harness these protections in support of their business.
The legal underpinnings which allow businesses to protect their creations – through intellectual property rights like trademark, copyright, patent, and more – as well as the business itself – through nondisclosure, noncompete, nonsolicitation, nonacceptance, and other agreements – are often conflicting in the cannabis space, both in the federal landscape and across the states. For example, while federal law prohibits traditional intellectual property protection for (non-hemp) cannabis businesses, state protection is also not comprehensive solution. That is, your IP must be sufficiently robust as to be defensible against infringement, but simultaneously flexible enough to be effective when applied against different regulatory schemes of cannabis-permissive states. Further, a company operating and protecting it’s IP in one state may not be protected against a company operating and protecting the nearly identical IP in another state. Heidi Urness Law is well-versed in these issues, and is prepared with a sophisticated collection of legal solutions to ensure your company’s intellectual property is both permissible and protected.
Additionally, B2B (allegations of) private intellectual property violations can, and often do, result in costly litigation. Further, cannabis businesses are uniquely positioned to incur violations due to rapid changes in relevant laws, as well as private interests which oppose any connection with marijuana, and should be highly attuned to these issues. Heidi Urness Law is deeply experienced in advising clients with respect to mitigating such risks as well as, if legal action has already commenced, negotiating settlements and engaging in litigation with respect to such issues on behalf of cannabis brands against, in some cases, even high-power multinational brands.
The success of your cannabis business during these highly competitive and legally volatile times requires the support of an attorney who is deeply and comprehensively informed about these applicable legal landscapes. Heidi Urness Law is passionate about promoting and protecting innovation in the cannabis space, and looks forward to the opportunity to connect with you and (confidentially) discuss your proprietary business ideas.