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May 19, 2012

Shop Talk: Knull Group, Intellectual Property & Business Attorneys

Business name: Knull Group, Intellectual Property & Business Attorneys

Address: 31 Chestnut St., Cooperstown

Contact:, 643-5777

Co-owner/Interviewee: Devin S. Morgan

Established: 2008

Employees: Three partners

Shop Talk is a weekly column featuring locally owned and operated businesses. This week, we talk to Devin S. Morgan, co-founder of the Knull Group, which provides legal services tailored to the business needs of gourmet food and beverage primarily to businesses in New York state.

How long have you lived in the area?

I have lived here since 2008, but my wife grew up in Cooperstown. We moved here from the Boston area to be closer to family. Chuck Knull, my co-founder, moved here from New York City in 2007.

Tell me about your business:

We are a specialized business law firm. Our focus is helping food and beverage businesses protect their most important assets _ know-how, brand and business relationships. Chuck and I are intellectual property attorneys. Chuck is focused on trademarks and copyrights. I am a patent attorney and expert in technology development, trade secrets and business transactions. We also have a third attorney in the Finger Lakes, Matt Henderson, who is an expert in corporate matters and buying and selling businesses.

Describe a typical day in your business:

Our days really vary based on what our clients need. Many days, we are asked to handle patent and trademark filings, disputes, or complex transactions. The client just wants us to get it done and report back. Days like that are at the computer and on the phone, occasionally in a face-to-face negotiation. We write, we discuss, we argue and we cajole to get the best business result for our clients. When a client has a bigger challenge or project for which they need our advice, we meet with them at their business. That way, we can really see what is going on and get an understanding of their day-to-day challenges. I recently spent half a day with a client team to identify intellectual property ownership issues and start developing a system for identifying and protecting their intellectual property as they grow. That is my favorite kind of typical day.

How did you get started in this line of work?

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