1. PARTIES / EFFECTIVE DATE. This Agreement is made between The Law Firm of Sausser & Spurr, LLC (“Attorney”) and You (“Client”). The effective date shall be the date of the latest signed Engagement Agreement. This Agreement will not be fully-executed unless and until written acceptance is confirmed via email to Client from Attorney.
2. SCOPE OF LEGAL SERVICES PROVIDED. This Engagement Agreement is for the purposes of Client hiring Attorney for the services defined as Responding to an Office Action. Responding to an Office Action service is defined to include the following: The legal services provided by Attorney to Client will include the drafting and submission of a response to one Office action for the above stated pending application that will address the issues raised by the examining attorney and thirty (30) minutes of non-substantive follow-up questioning with the examining attorney and/or Client to address any factual questions regarding the submitted response (“Legal Services”). All other services beyond the scope of services just described will incur an additional charge. Attorney will provide the Legal Services, respond promptly to Client’s communications, and keep Client apprised of all developments with the Client’s trademark application. Client understands that this is an application process, which could end in a denial of the Client’s trademark by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The Client also understands that registered trademarks require maintenance. MAINTENANCE AND REMINDERS OF MAINTENANCE DEADLINES WILL NOT BE HANDLED BY THE ATTORNEY UNDER THIS AGREEMENT. Lastly, the Client understands that the Legal Services are provided on a “best efforts” basis and there is no guaranteed outcome.
3. CLIENT’S PROMISE. Client agrees to work together with Attorney throughout this Agreement, to be available when requested by Attorney, provide needed declarations, pay all fees and costs associated with the opposition process, and keep Attorney aware of Client’s current contact information, including street address, telephone number(s), and email address at all times.
4. LEGAL FEE. The fee associated with this agreement is determinative of what types of issues have been raised in the Office action of the above stated pending application. In accordance with the Rules of Professional Conduct of South Carolina, any fee associated with this agreement will be placed in an interest on lawyer’s trust account (IOLTA) until earned by Attorney. Client may be entitled to a refund of all or a portion of the fee if the agreed upon Legal Services are not provided. Attorney will return to Client any unearned portion of the fee. The legal fee is considered completely earned once Attorney submits the Office action response to the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Attorney may be entitled to partial payment should Client terminate the relationship prior to completion of the Legal Services.
For those Office actions determined to be non-substantive “administrative” refusals the legal fee associated with this agreement is three hundred and ninety-nine dollars ($399.00 USD) per application. These types of Office actions include, but are not necessarily limited to, rejections based on issues concerning:
- Identification of the goods and/or services;
- Specimen(s) of use;
- Entity clarifications;
- Classification of goods and services;
- Disclaimers; or
- Other procedural matters.
Refusals based on three (3) or more administrative issues are considered complex.
For those Office actions determined to be substantive “complex” refusals the legal fee associated with this agreement is four hundred and ninety-nine dollars ($499.00 USD) per application. These types of Office actions include, but are not necessarily limited to, rejections based on:
- Section 2(e)(1) refusal for mere descriptiveness;
- Sections 2(e)(2) or 2(e)(3) refusal for being merely geographically descriptive and/or misdescriptive;
- Section 2(e)(4) refusal for being a surname;
- Section 2(a) refusal for being immoral or scandalous;
- Refusals based on three (3) or more administrative issues.
For those Office actions determined to be substantive “complex” 2(d) likelihood of confusion refusals the legal fee associated with this agreement is six hundred and ninety-nine dollars ($699.00 USD) per application. These types of Office actions include rejections based on:
- Section 2(d) refusal for likelihood of confusion.
5. GOVERNMENT FEES. Government fees are in addition to the above stated legal fees. For a complete list of government fees please see http://www.uspto.gov/learning-and-resources/fees-and-payment/uspto-fee-schedule.
6. ADMINISTRATIVE FEES. Any and all administrative costs are the Client’s responsibility and are in addition to the above stated legal fees.
7. TERMINATION. As it is in any professional relationship, Client has the right to terminate the lawyer-client relationship and discharge Attorney at any time during the duration of this Agreement. Attorney reserves the right to terminate this Agreement as well. If Client chooses to terminate this Agreement, Client must provide reasonable notice to Attorney and agrees to cover the expenses incurred prior to the termination, including but not limited to, payment for Attorney’s partially completed Legal Services. Should Client terminate the relationship prior to completing the Legal Services, Attorney has the option to charge an hourly fee of $200/hr. on the services provided prior to termination up to the flat fee rate.
8. SEVERANCE. In the event that one or more of the provisions of this Agreement shall be found by a court of law to be unenforceable, illegal or invalid, it shall not affect any other provisions of this Agreement, and this Agreement shall be construed as if the provision found to be unenforceable, illegal or invalid had never been contained in this Agreement.
9. COMPLETE AGREEMENT. This Agreement supersedes any prior or contemporaneous communications, representations or agreements between Attorney and Client and constitutes the complete and final agreement between the parties relating to this Agreement, this website or any services rendered by Attorney to Client. This Agreement contains the entire agreement of the parties. No other agreements, statements, or promises made on or before the effective date of this Agreement will be binding on the parties. This Agreement, and all terms herein, may only be modified by subsequent written agreement signed by both parties.
10. CONFLICTS / CLIENT CONFIDENTIALITY. Representation by Attorney is contingent on Attorney’s conflict check of Client. After confirmation that no conflict exists Attorney will send Client the fully executed Agreement via email. All the notes, writings, reports, research, and communications related to this matter will be maintained in strict confidence and are protected under the provisions of the Attorney-Client privilege.
11. GOVERNING LAW. This agreement shall be governed by the laws of the State of South Carolina, without regard to its conflict of law provisions.
12. JURISDICTION. Should any dispute arise, the action shall take place in Charleston, South Carolina.
13. SIGNATURES. The parties may execute this Agreement by electronic means and in electronic counterparts.