Intellectual property often adds great value to a business. However, it remains shrouded in mystery to many people. We hope the following fast facts give you the information you need to learn about intellectual property to protect your assets.
#1. There Are Four Basic Kinds of Intellectual Property
- Patents – Inventors are granted the exclusive right to a physical invention, a design, a process, or a unique improvement to one of the above.
- Copyrights – People who create original material have the exclusive right to the material they created. However, the creator can allow someone else to use the material.
- Trademarks – These symbols, phrases, or logos help separate one company’s products or services from another. Consumers and customers identify companies through their trademarks.
- Trade Secrets – A company’s confidential information can provide unique advantages or economic benefits, often giving them a competitive advantage.
A wide range of stuff can be considered intellectual property, or IP – everything from a new way to make peanut butter to the world’s next great rock opera to the logo that tells everyone to buy your product because it’s the ‘real thing.’
#2. It’s a Right, According to the UN
The United Nations considered intellectual property rights to be “like any other property right.” In fact, Article 27 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says creators of IP have “the right to benefit from the protection of moral and material interests resulting from authorship of scientific, literary or artistic productions.”
#3. Intellectual Property Can Be Protected
One way to protect some IP, like trade secrets, is to limit sharing the information. You can take steps to keep the information from being distributed.
On the other hand, copyright protection is automatic from the time the work is created. However, you can still make your copyright part of the public record by registering it.
If you have an invention to patent, however, you need to apply to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). You can also register trademarks here. Also, the USPTO website is an excellent source of information about intellectual property
#4. It Can Be Protected Internationally
Safeguarding your IP can be especially difficult in our increasingly global economy. The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) might be able to help.
WIPO offers inventors and creators the services needed to protect their IP worldwide. In addition, WIPO may be useful in resolving disputes and infringement cases without going to court.
If you have IP that may be used – or abused – internationally, talk to an attorney to find out how to protect your rights.
#5. You Can Stop or Sue Someone Who Infringes on Your IP.
When someone uses your intellectual property without permission, they are infringing on your rights.
If you notice someone using your IP without permission, talk to an attorney as soon as possible. You can notify the person or company doing the infringing. In some cases, they may not realize they need permission and will stop. However, you may have to sue them for damages.
Do You Need to Protect Your Intellectual Property?
At the Dailey Law Firm, P.C., our team of skilled lawyers and professionals provide the high-quality legal services you need. Call us at 844-342-5353 to set up a free consultation or use the Contact Form on our website. There’s no fee for personal injury cases unless we win.
We represent clients throughout the entire United States. You can reach us online or visit one of our offices in Detroit, Michigan; Chicago, Illinois; or Valparaiso, Indiana.