Intellectual Property Law – A Complete Guide

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This guide explains intellectual property laws, including Trademarks, Copyrights, and Utility patents. You will learn the different types of intellectual property and how they can protect your work and ideas. The following article covers the basics of intellectual property protection across the world. This guide will be a great start if you need an easy-to-read resource.

Trademarks

Trademarks are unique symbols that identify the owner of a product or service. While intellectual property laws protect trademarks, owners can license their trademarks to other companies under licensing agreements. A famous example is a ride-on toy car manufacturer that produces licensed rides. Sometimes, a trademark licensee will use the brand differently than the original owner.

Copyrights

Copyrights in intellectual property law are rights to a piece of creation uniquely yours. These creations are considered “unique” because they require a significant amount of mental ability to create. They can include websites, computer software, art, literary works, musical compositions, novels, and original architectural designs. Copyrights protect these original works from duplication. In addition, the intellectual property attorneys – Trusli also protect the original work author from financial loss due to copyright or piracy.

Trade secrets

What are trade secrets? Trade secrets are any information a business holds that is useful to the company. These secrets may include marketing plans, new technology, perfect recipes, customer information, etc. Famous examples of trade secrets include the formula for Coca-Cola, which has been closely guarded for over 100 years. Its creators also have to comply with strict rules regarding sharing their trade secrets.

Utility patents

In intellectual property law, utility patents protect how an article works or is used. An applicant must file a utility patent application with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). A utility patent application can have several claims, including how an article is packaged or marketed. The patent examiner may deny the patent application if it is obvious or infringing on other patents.

Design patents

There are some critical requirements for a design patent. First, it must be different from similar products but function the same way. If the shape of the design is identical to a product, it is not eligible for a design patent. If it is not, the applicant can file a divisional application to protect all possible design embodiments. The United States has a duty of disclosure that requires both the applicant and inventor to disclose prior art. This duty of disclosure remains in place until the design patent is granted.

Trade secret protection

There are several types of intellectual property laws that cover trade secrets. The Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA) is a federal law that aims to protect trade secrets and boost their value. While the Lanham Act and the Patent Act protect patents and trademarks, state laws generally protect trade secrets. The DTSA was passed in July 2015 with bipartisan support. There is also a federal crime known as economic espionage, which targets stealing trade secrets.

Estate planning

Whether you have a patent or an idea for a new product, you should have a professional appraise the value of your intellectual property. Then, determine whether it should be transferred during your lifetime or after you pass away. When deciding how to transfer your intellectual property, consider your income needs and the best person to monitor your rights and maximize your income potential. You may wish to appoint a trustee with exceptional knowledge to protect your intellectual property.


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