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Sheppard Mullin's Nota Bene

Jun 9, 2021

They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Nowhere is this imitation more unwelcome than when it comes to a company’s intellectual property. Intellectual property laws and the protection they offer ensure that a business can fully protect its brand and reap the benefits of its inventions. Intellectual property rights also provide a course of action for business owners should they face counterfeiters. In this episode, we’re exploring the types of intellectual property protections available to businesses and sharing practical ways to protect against infringements.  

Joining me for this conversation is intellectual property attorney Lisa Martens. Lisa is a partner in the Intellectual Property Practice Group in Sheppard Mullin’s San Diego (Del Mar) office. Lisa's practice focuses on the protection and enforcement of brands for clients ranging from startups and emerging companies to Fortune 500 corporations. She has particular expertise in the food and beverage, healthcare, life sciences, e-commerce, semiconductor, sporting goods and retail clothing industries.

Lisa counsels clients on a variety of trademark issues, including the development of U.S. and foreign trademark portfolios, global brand strategy and licensing. She has also successfully handled numerous domain name disputes in the U.S. and worldwide. In addition, Lisa provides advice on advertising substantiation and rights of publicity and has successfully litigated false advertising and right of publicity cases in federal court.

What We Discussed in This Episode:

  • What is counterfeiting and how does it harm companies?
  • What are copyrights and trademarks?
  • What qualifies for trademark protection? What qualifies for copyright protection?
  • Are trademark and copyright protections automatic? What must a business owner do to obtain each type of protection?
  • How intellectual property protections vary by country
  • In what ways can pirates knock off a product?
  • Which countries are considered “high piracy” locations?
  • What are some practical tips for protecting against counterfeiters?

Resources Mentioned:

U.S. Trademark and Patent Office – 

European Cluster Collaboration Platform - 

Contact Information:

Lisa’s Sheppard Mullin attorney profile -

World Trademark Review article – Practice tips for combatting counterfeiters: an action plan for brands, manufacturers and retailers 

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This podcast is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not to be construed as legal advice specific to your circumstances. If you need help with any legal matter, be sure to consult with an attorney regarding your specific needs.