I was wondering if anyone had any insight to potential problems with donating cookies. I do not have a legal license but want to donate cookies to a few business that could be potential clients in the future. What I am worried about is that if I put my "business name" on a card and attach it to the cookies, would this lead to any type of legal trouble? If anyone called me and wanted to "Buy" cookies in the future I would apply for a license and try to figure out where to bake legally.
Basically I want to "own" my business idea because I think its unique and I want to tap into these businesses. Would it be best to apply for a business license first and legalize my business name before donating cookies? Does this make sense?
Remember that "owning" your business idea only means that you have the ethical/moral rights to it -- to enforce your legal rights if someone infringed on what you had, you would have to hire a lawyer, which means big bucks.
Most copyrights in the world are registered but not "aggressively protected" with the exception of those belonging to really big corporations. Sesame Street/Children's Television Warehouse actually went after a tiny coffee shop in Taiwan because it was named "Sesame Street", and I've heard of a kindergarten there that had to paint over a mural with Mickey Mouse on it because of a threatened suit from Disney. You probably don't have enough money to really threaten anyone and mean it.
Now, the question of whether you should register or not is another one, and I can't speak to that, really. If you're thinking of registering only for the purpose of protecting your design or idea, it's probably not going to help much in practical terms. If you're thinking of registering for tax purposes, deductions, or to be legal, that's a different story.
BOOBOOCAT, You saved me a lot of typing, because that was the exact question I was interested in finding out. I am donating cookies to a charity this weekend and was going to put my contact information on the cookies.. I am no worried that this could be a potential problem.. any information would be greatly appreciated as well.. thank you.
I forgot to apologize for not being able to answer your question..
I make donations of cupcakes to fundraising events such as the red cross and cancer foundations...
Even though you are not selling, you should still be baking out of a licensed kitchen. Donating to the public is just not the same thing as giving a friend a box of cookies or a cake.
Call your local health authority and even your city to see if there are any permits you require.
You shld cover yourself in the case that someone gets ill. Also, you should have an ingredient list attached to the cookies, so that anyone with allergies will know what's in them.
waltz-thanks for reply. I guess "own" was a strong word, my sister is a trademark lawyer so I would just hire her!
Anyway, I just don't want to get sued for donating cookies to places of employment without being a true legal business. These donations would be unexpected also.