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Carstens & Cahoon, llp

Attorneys and Counselors

The seeds of invention often require protection from the weather of today’s global competition. Carstens & Cahoon, LLP offers both the legal and technical insight needed for your intellectual property to prosper and grow. We are intellectual property attorneys dedicated to helping our clients protect their ideas so they can thrive in any environment.

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Insights

The Neglected Design Patent?

When people talk about patents, they generally mean a “utility patent.”  To date, over 8 million utility patents have issued in the United States.  In contrast, only about 680,000 design patents have ever issued.  Why that discrepancy?  It’s hard to fathom, especially after Apple Corp. recently won a $1.05 billion jury verdict for design patent infringement against Samsung Electronics in the ongoing battle for cell-phone supremacy.[1]  So, the oft-neglected and overlooked design patent is clearly “no lightweight” in high-stakes patent litigation between heavyweights.  Nonetheless, the utility patent has almost entirely subsumed the entire concept of “a patent” in the public mind. Continue Reading →.


Texas Fashionably Late to the Uniform Trade Secrets Act Party

Significant changes in the law in Texas with respect to trade secrets went into effect September 1, 2013, with Texas becoming the 48th state to adopt the Uniform Trade Secrets Act.  Previously, there was no central repository for Texas trade secret law, as it was a combination of the common law, restatements, and the Texas Theft Liability Act.

The Act changes Texas trade secret law in a number of material respects and applies to any alleged misappropriation occurring on or after the effective date.  The extent of the changes will be determined by the courts as they interpret the Act but the Act is believed by many to eliminate a number of ambiguities that existed in the prior trade secret laws of Texas.  The changes will make trade secret protection broader in some circumstances and narrower in others, but will likely give more clarity to what is and is not considered a trade secret in Texas.

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