Intellectual Property law is all around us and any business that chooses to ignore the area does so at its own peril.  This webinar series is designed to teach corporate attorneys who are not IP specialists enough about IP law so that they can spot issues and know when to bring in the IP specialist.  As with all Financial Poise webinars, each episode in the series is designed to be viewed independently of the other episodes:  think sitcom rather than soap opera.
Negotiating with a web designer; selecting a domain name; and how that meshes with trademark law; understanding fair use:  these are just some of the concepts explored in this webinar.
Click here to register.

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Defining your bank's limits on earnings and minimum capital requirements can help safeguard against the reckless pursuit of return on equity.

BankThink
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Energy Future Holdings Corp. will continue making its case next Wednesday in Wilmington, Del., to pay as much as $18 million in bonuses to upper management. A hearing on the matter began on Oct. 8 and spilled into Oct. 9, as the company faces a fight from U.S. Trustee Roberta A. DeAngelis.
Among Ms. DeAngelis’s problems with the package is a pre-existing bonus arrangement that could nearly double the amount Energy Future is seeking.
Energy Future’s lawyers say the existing bonus package, $18 million worth of letters of credit backing payments to five top executives, has been disclosed in the company’s regulatory filings. The company has been putting on witnesses trying to prove the incentives tied to the bonuses are tied to difficult-enough milestones. Executives and other top employees aren’t allowed to be paid retention bonuses in bankruptcy cases, but incentive bonuses are acceptable. Ms. DeAngelis has argued the milestones tied to bonuses are too easy. The dust-up over bonuses comes as the company prepares to auction one of its most valuable assets, an 80% stake in the transmission business Oncor. Energy Future sought Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in April, with $42 billion in debt on its balance sheet.
LightSquared
LightSquared is scheduled to update a judge on its restructuring on Wednesday in Manhattan.
Last week, Judge Shelley C. Chapman told the wireless venture’s lawyers that she is considering converting the case to a Chapter 7 liquidation if parties can’t come together on a restructuring.

WSJ.com: Bankruptcy Beat
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Have you ever wanted to start your own marijuana cultivation and distribution business? Do you see billboards on the highway advertising pot-growing seminars and think, “Maybe I should go?” Does the grass seem greener on the other side? What was once a mere dream can be a reality now that several states have legalized the use, possession, distribution and cultivation of cannabis (a fancy term for marijuana) for medical or recreational reasons, and other states (such as my own state of Florida) will be voting on whether to legalize marijuana in the near future. Most people do not like to think about what would happen if things go awry with their perfectly-planned future business. But things do go wrong, businesses fail, and bankruptcy is regarded as a palliative means of bringing a failing business back to life or an orderly means of letting a business die with dignity. Before you quit your day job, however, and start spending the riches from your hypothetical marijuana business (or start thinking about the “joint-ly” administered cases you’ll file and “pot plan” you’ll propose should things go sour), read this cautionary tale. #hashtag:thingsonedoesnotappeartothinkaboutwhenplanningtheirfuturemarijuanabusiness.
The Arenas Case

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In order to make homeownership more affordable, the FHFA should make sure that GSE guarantee fees fully recognize private mortgage insurance and restore the longstanding tax-deductible treatment of mortgage insurance premiums.

BankThink
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credit card debtHistorically, being in credit card debt has come with a certain degree of social stigma.  While societal pressures push us ceaselessly to buy, we face a sort of shame when we cannot pay.  In 2010, the average New Yorker carried $6,600 in credit card debt, according to Debt.org.  The national average for credit card debt that same year was $7,300.  Sometimes this debt results in bankruptcy.  However, new research shows that the stigma that comes along with this sort of debt is unfounded.  Thus, if your debt is out of control, it does not mean you are irresponsible.  In fact, taking the proper steps to manage your debt is one of the most responsible things you can do.

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Editor's note: Morning Scan will not publish on Monday, Oct. 13 in observance of the Columbus Day holiday. We'll be back on Tuesday, Oct. 14. Receiving Wide Coverage....

Bernanke, Annoyed: Unsuccessful home-refinance applicant Ben Bernanke was the final star witness on Thursday in the shareholder lawsuit challenging the federal government's bailout of American International Group. Most of his answers were terse, according to several media reports, and he was often "visibly annoyed," the Journal reported. At one...

BankThink
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Apple Inc . supplier GT Advanced Technologies Inc. plans to exit the business of manufacturing sapphire after a failed effort to produce material for Apple’s smartphone screens. Read the Daily Bankruptcy Review story in the Wall Street Journal.
(Daily Bankruptcy Review is a daily newsletter with comprehensive coverage and analysis of emerging and in-progress insolvencies and turnarounds. For a two-week trial, visit our homepage, scroll to the bottom and click “try for free.”)
Trump Taj Mahal executives are accusing union leaders of “harassing” their customers who have upcoming conventions and other big events, telling them they should rebook their parties with the beleaguered casino’s Atlantic City rivals, reports DBR via The Journal.

WSJ.com: Bankruptcy Beat
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The Real Estate Frenzy
In the early years of the new millennium many people in Florida had big dreams of buying real property, fixing it up, and selling it for a profit. And many were successful. That is,until the bottom fell out of the real estate market fell out leaving many people who dabbled in real estate holding the proverbial bag. Some people tried to hold onto the properties and rent them out to cover the mortgage expense and other other expenses including property taxes, insurance, and in the worst cases condominium fees.
Florida Condominiums
Some of the hardest hit properties in Florida during the real estate crisis were condominiums. These properties generally lost their value at a greater rate than other types of real property. The declining values coupled with the condo association fees made making the required payments nearly impossible for a lot of folks who owned condominiums as investment properties or as their homestead. With the accrual of condo fees and non-payment of the mortgage, these property owners faced protracted litigation from both the mortgage holder and the condo association. Bankruptcy could be the answer.
In Re: Rosa

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Asarco LLC v. Goodwin, 756 F.3d 191 (2nd Cir. 2014) – A reorganized company (Asarco) sought contribution for payment of environmental claims from beneficiaries of trusts created under John D. Rockefeller’s will. The district court dismissed the claims, and Asarco … Continue reading →

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