Company assets often include tangible items such as real estate, equipment and machinery. However, increasingly a company’s competitive advantage depends on its intangible property. Intellectual property rights are the intangibles that the company possesses such human capital, know-how of its employees, trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets and patents.
To remain viable in today’s economy, companies of all sizes have to invest in their creativity and monetize it. Therefore, every company needs to develop a strong intellectual property (“IP”) strategy. It is vital to create a multi-pronged strategy to harness a company’s intellectual and creative abilities. Consequently, companies should put in place mechanisms that protect important investments in inventions, creative works, writings, confidential information and trademarks.
Intellectual Property Registration
Companies need to actively pursue protections for inventions through prosecution of patents and trademarks. Companies should also actively register trademarks and patents with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Copyrights are registered with the United States Copyright Office. Registration with the appropriate agencies creates an official record of a company’s mark, creative work or invention. In the likelihood that a competitor infringes, registration provides legal rights and protections.
Because many companies now participate in the global market, consideration of whether to register the mark in other countries should also be made. It is important to consider who and where the company’s consumers live. As a necessary protection, companies should register in the countries where the company does business.
Does Your IP already Exist?
When a company seeks to register its marks or patents, it must first ascertain whether the mark or patent is already registered or patented. Companies should also have a strategy of monitoring competitors marks and patents so that it can be aware of what is already available.
Before pursuing a certain product or marketing campaign, conducting a patent or trademark search to see if there are competing marks or patents can save millions of dollars. A company can evaluate whether the product will be viable or profitable based on the results of the search. Also, a search will enable a company to know if it is infringing on another’s intellectual property. Knowing ahead of time whether a company is infringing can prevent costly litigation and other penalties.
Intellectual Property Protection
Companies must actively protect their mark or patent. IP protection also requires active monitoring. Once a mark or patent has been found to be infringing, companies need to notify the infringer of their infringement. If the infringer fails to stop the infringement, initiation of litigation may become necessary.
Often, when a company successfully obtains a patent, trademark, or copyrights, it can monetize it through licensing. Companies need to create licensing schemes to generate profits. Licensing one’s intellectual property for payment of royalties can become a company’s main asset and source of revenues.
Investment in one’s intellectual property through registration and actively protecting it should be a priority. The intellectual property attorneys at East Coast Trial Lawyers have experience in registration of trademarks, copyrights, and patents, as well as intellectual property licensing and litigation. Our attorneys represent corporations, sole proprietorships, nonprofit organizations, and government entities.
Our lawyers also have experience in the following areas:
- Non-Disclosure / Confidentiality Agreements
- Copyright Registration
- Trademark Registration
- Trademark Maintenance
- Licensing Agreements
- Content Creator Representation
- Sponsorship Deals
East Coast Trial Lawyers Offer Skilled Guidance in Intellectual Property Matters
If you have questions about intellectual property or another business or corporate law matter, contact East Coast Trial Lawyers today by calling 757-352-2237 or contact us online. From our offices in Virginia Beach, Virginia, our experienced legal team represent clients in Chesapeake, Eastern Shores, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth, and Suffolk.