Frequently Asked Questions
You Ask, We Answer...
Kinney Firm's hourly rate is $300 for consulting and legal services, however, we try to quote flat-fee, per project, where possible.
We can assist you in defining and prioritizing your legal and business needs and we will tell you exactly how Kinney Firm can assist you, we will provide customized solutions and strategies, and after discovering your needs and goals we will provide either an estimate or quote for services.
We utilize LawPay to accept payment by e-check, major credit cards and offer online invoicing for your convenience.
What Consulting packages do you offer? How much are they?
We can assist you with your legal and business needs, whether you have questions about corporate formation, negotiation, client disputes, marketing, corporate correspondence, privacy, legal compliance or just general questions you'd like to discuss with a business attorney, we can help.
Our standard hourly rates for consulting are $300, however, we're committed to being a part of your team and offer annual package pricing to better assist you with financial planning.
If you pre-pay for 1 hour of consulting a month (for 12 months) - $3000 (savings of $600 or 2 months free.)
If you pre-pay for 2 hours of consulting a month (for 12 months) - $6300 (savings of $900, or 3 free consultations.)
Yes, we can create custom consulting packages to meet your specific needs. Contact us to learn more.
What type of business should I open?
This can be a complicated question because the answer depends on several factors, such as: What does your company do? How many owners/shareholders will you have? Do you have investors? Do you have personal creditors/legal liabilities? Obviously we can better advise you, the more information we have.
There are C Corporations that are what you probably think about when you think about corporations. They have a CEO, Board of Directors, Officers, can have different classes of shareholders and are federally taxed at a corporate and individual level, which is also referred to as “double taxation”.
S Corporations are more versatile corporations - the corporation is not taxed, but the profit and losses pass through to the owners and are reported on federal personal income taxes. There are strict requirements regarding how wages are paid, profits are distributed, what business expenses are deductible, etc. so there is not a cookie cutter, one size fits all answer to what entity is best, a careful analysis of where you are and where you want to go is necessary to select the right entity for you.
The Legal Liability Company (LLC) has become the most popular business formation, partially because of it’s lower startup costs and record keeping requirements. It’s seen as the best of both worlds because you gain the limitation of legal liability provided by a corporation with the flexibility to operate and be taxed as a partnership.
Because incorporation occurs at the state level, there can be different corporate, legal and tax implications you should be aware of prior to incorporating
What is a registered agent? Do I need one? What do they do?
A Registered Agent (sometimes called a Resident Agent or a Statutory Agent) is the person/entity that you designate to accept legal service for you, in the event someone is trying to contact you regarding a legal dispute. They may also accept legal documents and government correspondence on behalf of the business.
Yes. You are required to appoint a person or entity to accept service on behalf of your business entity.
What if I have offices in more than one state?
If you have offices in more than one state, hold property, have a bank account, have employees or ship from within the state, you may need to register your business as a foreign business and designate a registered agent within that state. Registering a foreign corporation may sound like an international affair, but it simply means you are registering your company to do business other than the state in which it is headquartered/domiciled.
What do I do if my business is headquartered in another country?
We can assist you with that. You do not need to be a U.S. citizen or even a resident to incorporate in the United States. There are advantages and disadvantages for an international business registering to do business in the United States.
In the United States, incorporation is a governmental process that takes place at the the state level. The process varies from state to state and there are advantages and disadvantages, at a business, tax and legal level.
What is a trademark? Do I need one?
Very simply put, a trademark is an indicator or source, it’s the colors, image, font, slogan that make people think of your brand. Examples are: the Nike Swoosh or McDonald’s Golden Arches or “I’m Lovin’ It.” Making sure you are able to own the mark before you build your business around it is the wisest course of action. If you are spending the time and money to build your brand, create goodwill and brand recognition and equity, you should protect that investment by securing your intellectual property on a federal level and ensuring competitors will not be able to use your mark.
Federal Trademarks are issued based on first to file.
How much is a federal trademark?
The federal filing fees for trademarks depend on the type of application being filed, generally, you can expect to pay either $275 or $325 per mark, per international class.
We perform federal trademark filing services on a flat-fee basis. For a flat-fee of $750, we will spend up to an hour on an initial trademark consultation to answer any trademark questions you may have, explain the federal trademark process and advise you on the wisest course of action to grow your intellectual property, meet your business goals and not break the bank doing it. Kinney Firm works with you to gather all information and specimens necessary to submit the application on your behalf, and we will represent you in standard correspondence with the USPTO examining attorney and respond to standard Office Actions.
The trademark application and "standard correspondence" does not include responding to rejections or oppositions. And we may offer package pricing if filing more than one trademark or in more than one international class. Contact Kinney Firm for information specific to you needs.
Do I need to be a US citizen register a US federal trademark?
No. Whether the owner is an individual or a corporate entity, you are able to file for a U.S. federal trademark, specifying what country you're a citizen of or where your company is headquartered.
Those with dual citizenship need to choose which country they prefer appears on the registration certificate.
Can Kinney Firm assist me with trademark assignments?
Yes. When buying or selling intellectual properties, a contract called an assignment is usually created between the parties and recorded (filed and publicly available to be searched) with the USPTO, evidencing the transfer of ownership rights. Kinney Firm can assist you with this.
How long does the trademark process take?
A USPTO examining attorney is usually assigned to begin the review process around 3 months after the application is filed.
There are many factors that can impact your application's processing time, but most applications are completely processed in about a year.
In the U.S., the important date for trademarks is the date of filing. The fact that you've applied for the mark becomes public record and will be taken into account if someone else files for your mark or something substantially similar, even while your registration is pending. So being the first to file can have advantages.
How long do I own a trademark?
As long as the owner continues to use it and:
Files the Declaration of Use to attest to that fact:
(1) between the fifth and sixth year after registration and (2) in the year prior to the end of every 10-year period, after the registration date.
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