Intellectual Property

Intellectual Property Law – Protecting Your Ideas.


An idea is an important first step, but ideas must be coupled with something else. You or your business may need a patent, copyright, trademark, or some combination to fully protect your idea, so it’s important to know the basic differences.

Trademark

A trademark is a word, symbol, or slogan that identifies a particular good or service. Some well-known examples of trademarks include Wal-Mart, Kodak, Xerox, Google, and Nike, each standing for a particular good or service. Trademarks help customers or clients to distinguish your product or service from the competition.

            If you or your business plan to market a particular good or service, chances are you will need a trademark as part of your protection portfolio.

            For more on Trademarks click here.

Patent

An inventor of a unique product or process has the right to seek a patent on his or her invention. The patent gives the inventor the right to exclude others from making, using, or selling the invention during the term of the patent. Some well-known examples of patents include Frisbees, Legos, and Slinkys. Interestingly, each of these patents are also associated with a trademark – all excellent examples of how trademark and patent protection can work hand in hand.

If you or your business have developed a novel product or process, a patent may be an option for you.

            For more on Patents click here.

Copyright

A copyright applies to original works of authorship that are fixed in a tangible medium of expression. Copyrights typically include songs, books, movies, and works of art, but copyright protection may also extend to less obvious works such as software and t-shirt designs.

            If you or your business have created an original work of authorship, a copyright may be right for you.

For more on Copyrights click here.