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Technology and Intellectual Property

BETTER INNOVATIONS Are built on cutting-edge insights

Technology impacts every aspect of our lives—and it is constantly changing. HMB attorneys are at the forefront of the laws that influence how technology impacts our world, as well as connected to the innovations that bring new ideas to reality. We are here to guide you through this ever-evolving landscape.

Protecting Your Assets

Intellectual property (IP) is often your most valuable asset. We help individuals, founders, start-ups and companies large and small protect their IP and commercialize it to foster business success. When infringement occurs, we represent your interests vigorously to minimize disruptions to your business.

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Assessing Your Risk

The data you generate, collect and process is the intelligence that drives your business forward. It has value, internally and in the marketplace, but it also carries complex compliance and security risks. We work with you to assess the full spectrum of your data risk exposures, develop plans to mitigate potential issues and stay current with the specifics of all regulatory frameworks.

Transactions are Integral to Your Growth

We collaborate with other core practices at the firm—including our corporate/M&A, restructuring and tax practices—on all technology and IP aspects of public and private corporate transactions. This includes mergers and acquisitions, spin-offs, divestitures, joint ventures, financings and restructurings.

Cover Your SaaS - Issue IIJune 22, 2020

Welcome to the second edition of Cover Your SaaS, your new favorite(ish) semi-regular publication from HMB Legal Counsel’s State & Local Tax team. Far from accepting a sophomore slump, this edition boldly delves into SALT developments in the digital products sphere, the importance of separately stating charges, and the dangers of straying into taxable telecommunications.

Cover Your SaaS: A Semi-Regular Publication on State and Local Tax Developments in the Cloud Computing and Digital Space - 4/10/20April 10, 2020

Welcome to the first edition of Cover Your SaaS, a new semi-regular publication from HMB Legal Counsel’s State & Local Tax team. Using the latest in news-scanning technology, i.e., the daily emails that land in our inbox, our goal is to keep you updated on key SALT developments in the digital and cloud computing space.

Cybersecurity PreparednessJanuary 29, 2020

As 2020 kicks off, cybersecurity remains ever present in the news whether its predictions for cyberattacks in conflict between state actors, such as the United States and Iran, or the recent New York Times report regarding a possible hack at the Ukrainian gas company at the heart of the impeachment investigations.

Applying the Chicago Lease Transaction Tax to “Cloud” Software ProductsSeptember 11, 2019

In a prior post, I explained the basics of the Chicago Personal Property Lease Transaction Tax (“Transaction Tax”), including the applicability of the tax to tangible personal property and software, potentially applicable exemptions and exclusions from the tax, and collection issues. This follow-up post in the Practitioner Series further clarifies the application of the Transaction Tax to “cloud” software products and explores the interplay with the Illinois Retailers’ Occupation Tax (“ROT”).

The BEC/FBI Tech Hacking Advisory - Doing Business with Foreign Suppliers/BusinessesOctober 29, 2015

It was not so long ago that in the cyberspace realm businesses only needed to worry about having a good firewall and spam filter to prevent fraud. Now, as technology has advanced so have the fraudsters and the government is warning businesses, especially those conducting business with foreign suppliers and/or businesses, of a new and escalating scam called the Business Email Compromise, the BEC.

Marla M. Izbicky Elected as Director of the Women's Bar Association of IllinoisOctober 7, 2020

In a unanimous vote, Marla was elected as the newest Director of the Women's Bar Association of Illinois for the 2020-2021 executive leadership year. The WBAI, one of the oldest and largest bar associations in the state of Illinois, was first established in 1914 and was founded to promote the interests and welfare of women lawyers and also to aid…

Samantha K. Breslow Published in Tax Notes State - "Internet Tax Freedom Act: Protector From the Tax Man?"June 8, 2020

In this second of a three-part series, Breslow discusses the Internet Tax Freedom Act and whether the digital world has really been protected from the tax man. Adoption and Intent of the ITFA Initially adopted in 1998 under the Clinton administration with the mantra “no new internet taxes,” the Internet Tax Freedom Act (ITFA) was made permanent on February 24,…

Chris T. Lutz and Samantha K. Breslow Present a Webinar - "State Taxation of Digital Goods and Services in 2020" - 5/20/20April 21, 2020

5/20/20 12:30PM CST CPE Pending Recent state cases like Ex Parte Russell County Community Hospital and Citrix Systems are just the tip of the iceberg as states audit taxpayers in a digital economy. Chris and Samantha will provide an update on recent cases and legislation in this area and, more importantly, will describe their experiences with taxpayers as they attempt…

David A. Hughes and Samantha K. Breslow Present a Webinar - "Internet Tax Freedom Act: Protector from the Taxman?" - 4/29/20April 20, 2020

4/29/2020 12:30PM CST CPE Pending The intent of the Internet Tax Freedom Act was to protect electronic commerce from the taxman, but has it succeeded? This webinar will focus on recent pending cases (Labell v. City of Chicago and Apple, Inc. v. City of Chicago) involving ITFA claims and proposed legislation (Digital Advertising Gross Revenues Tax) that potentially implicates ITFA.…

HMB Welcomes Tara Reedy Sliva and Expands Intellectual Property PracticeApril 15, 2020

4/15/20 Chicago, IL HMB Legal Counsel, a preeminent provider of legal services in business and finance, litigation, trusts and estates, real estate, state and local taxes and corporate reorganization, bankruptcy and creditor's rights, announced that accomplished trademark and copyright attorney, Tara Reedy Sliva joined the firm as a partner and will lead the firm’s growing intellectual property practice. Tara’s practice…

Samantha Breslow published in Tax Notes State - "Debugging the (State Tax) Code: Outdated Sales Tax Terminology"December 9, 2019

Read the full article on Tax Notes here (subscription required). Samantha Breslow discusses how the sluggishness of legislation does not often adjust itself to the speed and terminology of technology. However, there are a few states that are adapting to overcome the discrepancies. Download a PDF of the full article here. Debugging the (State Tax) Code: Outdated Sales Tax Terminology…

Data Scraping Survives! (At Least For Now...) Key Takeaways From 9th Circuit Ruling on the hiQ vs. Linkedin CaseSeptember 20, 2019

The original case was brought in California federal district court in 2017 by a company (hiQ) trying to protect its business of using publicly posted user data on LinkedIn. The California federal district court awarded a temporary restraining order against LinkedIn. This order allowed hiQ to keep scraping data off of LinkedIn’s platform on employees in connection with one of…

Samantha Breslow Discusses Chicago's "Cloud Computing Tax" with Bloomberg Law NewsSeptember 16, 2019

Auditors in Chicago have been aggressively asserting that businesses have tax duties under the "cloud computing tax" because of their economic presence, or the volume of business they conduct within the city. In an article by Bloomberg Law News titled "State of Wayfair: Economic Thresholds Sneak Into Chicago Audits" by Michael J. Bologna, Samantha Breslow explains that the problem is…

As Reports of Hacking and Wire Fraud/BEC Scams Increase, Here's What You Can Do to PrepareJune 12, 2019

Business Email Compromise ("BEC") is a scam perpetrated by cyber criminals to attack businesses that first began to be tracked and reported by the FBI in 2013. BEC typically consists of phony or phishing emails that appear to originate from a company executive or member of a company's accounting or finance department containing fraudulent payment instructions with the objective to…

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