Legal Environment

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In this page: Business Contract | Intellectual Property | Legal Framework of Business | International Dispute Resolution

 

Business Contract

General Observation
You must define precisely the seller's obligations and the methods of quality control.
Law Applicable to the Contract
Article 1 (General Provisions), Article 2 (Sales) of The Uniform Commercial Code and Article 9 (Secured Transactions).
Advisable Incoterms
Choose an incoterm FOB (Free On Board) or CIF (Cost, Insurance and Freight). Avoid EXW (Ex works), if you don't want to have to take care of the transport. Visit the website Foreign Trade to see all the incoterms.
Language of Domestic Contract
English
Other Laws Which Can Be Used in Domestic Contracts
American Law: State Level.

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Intellectual Property

National Organisations
United States Patent and Trademark Office and the U.S. Copyright Office
Regional Organisations
UNECA (UN Economic Commission for Africa)

APEC (Asian-Pacific Economic Cooperation)

UNECE (UN Economic Commission for Europe)

ECLAC (UN Ecomomic Commission for Latin America & the Caribean)

ESCWA (UN Ecomomic and Social Commission for Western Asia)

International Membership
Member of the WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization)
Signatory to the Paris Convention For the Protection of Intellectual Property
Membership to the TRIPS agreement - Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS)
 

National Regulation and International Agreements

 
Type of property and law Validity International Agreements Signed
Patent
 
United States Code Title 35
20 years Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT)
Trademark
 
U.S. trademark law
20 years, renewed for periods of ten years, unless previously cancelled or surrendered. Trademark Law Treaty
Protocol Relating to the Madrid Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Marks
Design
 
Industrial Designs
15 years  
Copyright
 
Copyright Law
During the life of the author, plus an additional 50 or 70 years Berne convention For the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works
Convention for the Protection of Producers of Phonograms Against Unauthorized Duplication of Their Phonograms
Rome ConventionFor the Protection of Performers, Producers of Phonograms and Broadcasting Organizations
WIPO Copyright Treaty
WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty
Industrial Models
 
United States Code Title 35
Indefinite  

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Legal Framework of Business

Equity of Judgments

Equal Treatment of Nationals and Foreigners
Foreign nationals can expect an impartial trial from the judicial system.
The Language of Justice
English
Recourse to an Interpreter
Each federal court is required to provide, at the judiciary's expense, a certified or otherwise qualified interpreter in judicial proceedings instituted by the United States for a party who speaks only or primarily a language other than English.
Legal Similarities
The main source of the law is the Constitution of 1787. The country's legal system is based on a federal court system. It has been influenced by English Common Law, as well as judicial reviews of various legislative acts. Each state has its own unique legal system with its own supreme court. A case may be appealed from a state supreme court to the federal Supreme Court only if it is related to federal issues, such as the U.S. Constitution or laws/treaties of the United States.
 

The Jurisdictions

 
The U.S Supreme Courts Its jurisdiction is set out by statute in Title 28 of the U.S. Code. Most of the time the Supreme Court is judicial review. While the Supreme Court is a separate branch of government, outside factors do exert some influence on the Court. For further information, consult the US Constitution
U.S Federal Court of Appeals (13) When cases are appealed from district courts. Consult the website of the U.S Federal Court of Appeals
U.S Federal District Courts (94) Consult the website of the US Courts
State Courts Consult the website of the US Courts
The Court of Federal Claims The Court of Federal Claims hears cases in which the U.S. Government is sued.
The Court of Military Appeals More information
The Court of International Trade The Court of International Trade hears cases involving appeals of rulings of U.S. Customs offices.
 
 

Court Officials

Chief Justice of the United States
The head of the judicial branch of the government of the United States, nominated by the US president.
U.S Attorneys
Represent the United States federal government in USA district court and USA court of appeals.
US Judges
Judges of the courts of appeals and the district courts, and judges of the Court of International Trade, are appointed for life under Article III of the Constitution by the President of the United States with the advice and consent of the Senate. Bankruptcy judges are judicial officers of the district courts and are appointed by the courts of appeals for 14-year terms. Magistrate judges are judicial officers of the district courts and are appointed by the judges of the district court for eight-year terms.
 
 

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International Dispute Resolution

Arbitration
Arbitration is a form of alternative dispute resolution outside the courts, wherein the parties to a dispute refer it to one or more persons, by whose decision they agree to be bound.
Arbitration Law
U.S Code Title 9: Arbitration Law
Conformity to International Commercial Arbitration Rules
Party to the New York Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards.
Party to the Geneva Protocol on Arbitration Clauses.
Party to the Geneva Convention of the Execution of Foreign Arbitral Awards.
Appointment of Arbitrators
Consult the section 5 on Appointment of arbitrators
Arbitration Procedure
After hearing the parties, the arbitrator makes an award. All arbitration awards will be made in writing.  Unless the parties agree otherwise, arbitrators are not required to, and will not, make written opinions or explanation's with their awards.
Permanent Arbitration Bodies
Maritimes Arbitration Association of United States (Sectors Covered: Maritimes)
American Arbitration Association (Sectors Covered: Employment, intellectual property, consumer, technology, health care, financial services and construction.)
The International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR) (Sectors Covered: International trade conflicts)

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Latest Update: June 2022