July 30, 2013

“Making Her Mark,” Legal News, July 30, 2013

Trademark Attorney Beth Coakley has a signed thank-you note from Martha Stewart, for trademark work done two decades ago, before the business magnate and TV personality reached celebrity status.

“I like to think the trademark licensing work I did helped us both launch a career that’s still thriving today,” says Coakley, a principal at the global intellectual property firm of Harness Dickey & Pierce in Troy, where she focuses on trademarks, copyrights, domain name disputes, licensing, and anti-counterfeiting.

According to Coakley, while a company’s brand is often its most valuable asset, trade names and trademarks are not typically valued or treated as a tangible asset from a shareholder or tax standpoint.

“In practice however, if the name of a business or the name of a newspaper is removed or covered up, there would be considerably less interest in them because there would be no goodwill associated with these ‘brand-less’ resources.”

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