Category Archives: Attorneys

“The Inventors – Tools & Tips on IP Strategy Development in the Sustainable Industry”

Intellectual Property Strategy

SAM Partner Kevin DeBré moderated a Sustainability Council event panel entitled “The Inventors – Tools & Tips on IP Strategy Development in the Sustainable Industry.”

Other panelists include:

Wally Rippel – Co-Founder & CTO, AC Propulsion
Spencer Brown – Founder, Rent-A-Green Box
Elizabeth Gibson, Managing Counsel, Toyota Legal One c/o Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc.

Kevin DeBré has also authored a U.S. Intellectual Property Protection handout that outlines each form of IP Protection and its advantages and disadvantages. To view the handout, click US IP Summary Handout.

For more information on our Intellectual Property practice, contact Kevin DeBré at kdebre@stubbsalderton.com or (818) 444-4521.

Stubbs Alderton & Markiles Featured in LA Business Journal Article Regarding Tech Growth in the Legal Industry

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The Los Angeles Business Journal featured the recent expansion of Stubbs Alderton & Markiles’ Business Litigation practice in its March 31 edition regarding tech growth in the Los Angeles legal market. To view the full article, click here.

For more information about our Business Ligitation practice, contact SAM Partner Michael Sherman, at masherman@stubbsalderton.com or 818-444-4528.

Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP Expands Firm with Business Litigation Practice Group

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Leading Business Litigation Group Headed by Michael Sherman Joins Firm

Los Angeles, CA (March 11, 2014) – Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP, Southern California’s leading business law firm, has announced that nationally recognized litigator Michael Sherman has joined the firm as a partner in its Sherman Oaks office. Mr. Sherman will lead the firm’s newly-created Business Litigation practice group.

Michael Sherman is an accomplished trial lawyer in high-stakes, “bet-the-company” litigation, and has represented both large and early-stage companies as well as entrepreneurs in all facets of business and complex commercial litigation.    He has evenly split his litigation practice on both the plaintiff and defense side of cases, has first-chaired numerous trials in complex matters in industries as varied as securities, healthcare, environmental, consumer products, technology, project development/finance, advertising, real estate and apparel, and is highly skilled in class actions and unfair competition law.  Michael’s trial skills and courtroom success resulted in his having been named to the “Top 100 Lawyers” in California list, published by the Daily Journal newspaper chain.

“Stubbs Alderton & Markiles has been planning to expand our capabilities by creating a vibrant business litigation practice, and we could not be more excited about having someone of Michael’s stature joining us to do so.  We have worked closely with Michael for many years, often referring our most important litigation matters to him at Bingham McCutchen.  Michael is one of the best litigation attorneys in Los Angeles, and together we are going to build a general litigation practice that is as dynamic, efficient and effective as the transactional practice we have built over the last 12 years.”

The addition of the Business Litigation practice group continues the firm’s strategic expansion in the Southern California market, following the opening of their Santa Monica office and addition of a Brand Development and Content Protection practice in 2012 and 2013, respectively.

“Southern California is one the world’s largest economies.  Its business life-blood is entrepreneurs and start-ups that have grown to become many of the world’s leading businesses.  The partners of Stubbs Alderton & Markiles know that as well as any lawyers.  Managing disputes efficiently and strategically is on occasion the key to success, and that’s what I bring to the Firm.  I’m very excited to participate in the Firm’s continued success.”

Michael has been recognized as a leading trial lawyer by his peers and featured in the press for some of his significant victories on behalf of clients. He is a recent past president of the Los Angeles Chapter of the Association of Business Trial Lawyers. He is a frequent speaker and writer on business litigation and trial advocacy, and has consistently been named to “Best Lawyers in America” in the field of commercial litigation.

Also joining the firm is David Gubman, a seasoned business litigation attorney.  David will join the firm as of counsel in its Sherman Oaks office.  David has big-firm experience and he and Michael have successfully tried cases together.

Please visit www.stubbsalderton.com for complete attorney bios.

About the Stubbs Alderton & Markiles Business Litigation Practice

The Firm’s litigators have significant depth and breadth of resources and a detailed knowledge of clients’ industries and business concerns.  In providing the best possible representation, our litigators appreciate that on occasion disputes may need to be tried to a judge, jury or arbitrator, and that in other instances the client is best served with an early resolution that is designed to preserve business relationships and minimize expense and litigation distraction.

Our litigators have a proven track record for analyzing complex legal and business challenges.  Our attorneys are experienced, innovative and aggressive in their pursuit of strategic outcomes.

Our litigation clients include household name Fortune 500 companies along with middle market, and emerging growth companies.  We seek to make long term relationships with our clients throughout their evolutionary path.  We deliver efficiency and value to every client we serve through a well-defined budget and clear communication about their case.

About Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP

Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP is a business law firm with robust corporate, public securities, mergers and acquisitions, intellectual property and business litigation practice groups focusing on the representation of venture backed emerging growth companies, middle market public companies, large technology and Internet companies, entertainment, video games and digital media companies, investors, venture capital funds, investment bankers and underwriters. The firm’s clients represent the full spectrum of Southern California business with a concentration in the technology, entertainment, video games, apparel, consumer electronics and medical device sectors. The firm’s mission is to provide technically excellent legal services in a consistent, highly-responsive and service-oriented manner with an entrepreneurial and practical business perspective. These principles are the hallmarks of the firm.  For more information, please visit www.stubbsalderton.com

Contact:

Heidi Hubbeling
Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP
(310) 746-9803
hhubbeling@stubbsalderton.com

What Startups Need to Know About Taxes – Webinar – March 11, 2014

 

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What Startups Need to Know About Taxes

Tue, Mar 11, 2014 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM PST

Register Now!

Tax season is rapidly approaching…are you ready?

Startup taxes are complicated — every business is different and there are no simple answers. But there are best practices that can help you to avoid paying too much and encountering preventable tax problems.

Join Mike Shaff, Counsel at Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP and Glenn McCrae, Chief Strategy Officer of Early Growth Financial Services, for a free webinar on startup taxes: what you need to know and how to save money and stay in compliance.

Mike and Glenn will outline your tax obligations and cover what you need to know about:

- Income taxes
- Compliance / Registration issues
- Payroll
- Sales tax
- Available tax credits for startups

Bring your questions and get expert advice on startup taxes.

To register, click here.

Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP Announces New Partner

JonathanFriedmanStubbs Alderton & Markiles LLP is pleased to announce that, effective January 1, 2014, Jonathan Friedman has been named Partner of the firm.

Background

Jonathan advises a wide range of both public and private clients, including development-stage, emerging-growth and middle-market companies as well as angel investors, venture capital firms and strategic investors. Jonathan’s practice focuses on venture capital and corporate finance, intellectual property licensing, mergers and acquisitions, securities law and general corporate and business matters. Jonathan has represented corporations and other entities in a wide variety of industries, including Internet and e-commerce, apparel, medical devices, entertainment and high technology.

To view Jonathan Friedman’s complete bio, click here.

 

SAM Partner Tony Keats Co-Authors “Protecting the Brand: Counterfeiting and Grey Markets”

SAM Partner, and Co-Chair of the Firm’s Brand Development & Content Protection Practice, Tony Keats has Co-Authored the book, “Protecting the Brand: Counterfeiting and Grey Markets.” For more information regarding our Brand Development and Counterfeiting expertise, contact Tony at (310) 746-9802 or akeats@stubbsalderton.com.  For order information and discount codes, please see the below flyer.

Protecting the Brand Flyer for Author_Page_1

Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP Partner Jonathan Friedman Participates in Roundtable Discussion Regarding Partnerships Between Canada and the Silicon Beach Tech Community

January 14, 2014 – SAM Partner Jonathan Friedman participated in a roundtable discussion with the Consulate General of Canada, David Fransen and Director General, Foreign Affairs and International Trade Roxanne Dubé, as well as other active members of the LA/Silicon Beach Tech Community to outline the state of the LA Tech Community and how partnerships can be made between Canada and Silicon Beach.

Jonathan is a member of the Executive Committee of the Canadian California Business Council, an entity that was formed to support Canada and California businesses growth. The Council aims to use its membership network to connect bi-lateral opportunities that will result in the job creation, investment connection and trade partnership support.  For more information regarding cross-border transactions between Canada and the U.S., please contact Jonathan at (818) 444-4514 or jfriedman@stubbsalderton.com.

Important Business News from Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP – New California “Do Not Track” Law Goes into Effect January 1, 2014

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Important Business News

from

Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP

New California “Do Not Track” Law Goes into Effect January 1, 2014

 

Beginning January 1, 2014, AB 370, an amendment to the California Online Privacy Protection Act (CalOPPA), will require owners of commercial websites to disclose how they respond to “do not track” signals and to inform users of these websites if their online activities are being tracked. “Do Not Track” technology enables a web browser to express the user’s preference not to be tracked by websites. When this feature is activated, a user’s browser signals to advertising networks and other websites the user’s choice to opt out of being tracked.

This new law does not make it illegal to ignore “do not track” settings on web browsers. Instead, it requires each business to disclose whether or not they ignore these settings. The law also requires each business to disclose whether its website tracks over time and across other websites the online activity of consumers residing in California who visit the website or if the business allows third parties to track the website’s visitors. Failure to comply with the new law could lead to significant fines enforced by the California Attorney General.

Here are some suggested business practices for adapting to the new law:

  • Conduct an audit of your website. Determine how your website responds to “do not track” browser settings and signals and whether your business permits third parties to conduct tracking activities on your website.
  • Update your website’s privacy statement. California business owners should update their website’s privacy statement by January 1, 2014 to include disclosures about how the website responds to “do not track” signals.

How Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP can help. We are a business law firm with particular expertise in privacy and Internet law. Our attorneys have extensive experience in developing effective and legally compliant privacy statements for websites. Please contact us directly if you would like assistance in updating your website’s privacy statement to comply with the new “Do Not Track” law.

For any questions, please contact Kevin DeBré, Scott Alderton or Stephen McArthur.

Kevin DeBré
kdebre@stubbsalderton.com
818.444.4521

Scott Alderton
salderton@stubbsalderton.com
888.444.4501

Stephen McArthur
smcarthur@stubbsalderton.com
310.746.9823

3 Questions with Jason Lee

Jason_Lee_FIXJason Lee is an associate of the Firm. His practice focuses on corporate transactions, including mergers and acquisitions, private equity transactions, and general corporate matters for both public and private clients, focusing on middle-market and emerging growth companies. In addition, Jason counsels companies in connection with company formation process, SEC reporting requirements and registrations, federal and state securities laws and compliance, corporate governance matters, joint ventures, employee incentive plans and executive employment agreements.  Below, Jason evaluates exclusive dealing arrangements under Section 1 of the Sherman Act.

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Q.  What does Section 1of the Sherman Act seek to prevent?

A.   Section 1 of the Sherman Act prohibits unreasonable restraints on trade.  Section 1 of the Sherman Act prohibits any contract, combination or conspiracy that unreasonably restrains trade.  Restraints are typically analyzed by two standards: per se or the rule of reason.  Certain restraints are so unreasonably harmful that they are per se illegal.  Others require court analysis under the rule of reason.

 Q.  What are the elements a plaintiff must establish to prove a violation under Section 1 of the Sherman Act for an exclusive dealing contract?

 A.   A plaintiff bringing a claim of violation of Section 1 must establish that an agreement between two or more parties exists, there is an effect on interstate or foreign commerce and the agreement places an unreasonable restraint on trade.  The agreement between the parties can made among competitors or among parties at different levels within a certain distribution chain.  In addition, an agreement can exist even if there is no written contract.

 Under the rule of reason, a plaintiff must define the relevant market restrained by the challenged agreement, show that the defendant has market power in the relevant market and establish that such agreement adversely effects competition in the relevant market.  For exclusive dealing agreements, courts examine the effects of competition on a relevant market by determining if such an arrangement forecloses a substantial portion of any competing supplier’s distribution channels.

Q. What factors do courts use to review the impact of foreclosure of competitors to distribution channels?

 A.  To assess the competitive impact of foreclosure, courts measure the percentage of foreclosure and several qualitative factors listed below.

 -          Percentage of foreclosure. Courts generally find that an arrangement that forecloses 20% or less of the relevant market presumptively does not adversely affect competition. However, the percentage of foreclosure is not a definitive factor.  Under the qualitative substantiality standard, courts evaluate agreements and the percentage of foreclosure in light of conditions in the market.

 -          Market position of the seller imposing the restraint.  Courts will require that the seller and party to the agreement has a dominant position.

 -          Duration and terminability of the exclusive arrangement.  Courts generally hold agreements that have a term of one year do not have substantial anticompetitive effects and are presumptively legal.  Likewise, if agreements are easily terminated by the distributor, even if its term is longer than one year, courts are likely to find the agreement reasonable.

-          Level in the distribution chain where restraint is imposed and whether alternative methods of distribution exist.  Courts review the level of the distribution chain where the restraint exists.  If the restraint involves a middleman distributor, as opposed to consumers, courts tend to require a higher amount of foreclosure percentage because it is less obvious the restraint will affect competition at the consumer level.  Courts will also look to see if there are alternative outlets for competitors to reach consumers.  If such alternative outlets exist, courts are reluctant to find an exclusive dealing arrangement illegal.

 -          Whether there has been entry into or withdrawal from the supplier market. If there is a successful recent entry into the supplier’s market, courts are less likely to find that an exclusive dealing arrangement substantially foreclosed competition.  Conversely, if there is evidence competitors have not been able to enter the market because of an exclusive dealing arrangement, the agreement is more likely to be found anticompetitive and illegal.

 -          Prevalence of exclusive dealing arrangements in the industry.  Courts will review how prevalent exclusive dealing arrangements are in the relevant market.

 -          Whether the exclusive dealing arrangement was the product of competition.  Courts also consider whether exclusive dealing arrangements result from vigorous competition as opposed to anticompetitive behavior.  If there is a bidding process where a retailer or distributor sought exclusivity, courts are unlikely to find that agreement unreasonable because courts generally view a buyer seeking exclusivity obligations to be an indicator that the arrangement is procompetitive.  If the arrangement exists because the defendant offers a better product or better price to the distributor than competitors, courts tend to uphold the agreement as legal.

 Ultimately, a plaintiff must show that the supplier’s action forecloses competitors in such a way that allows the supplier to either raise prices, restrict output or otherwise harm consumers.

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For more information about the Sherman Act and other corporate matters, contact Jason Lee at (818) 444-4506 or jlee@stubbsalderton.com.