Registering and Defending Your IP
Provided by HG.org
Intellectual property most often needs both the standard and extra protection from theft, reproduction or those that would build upon the previous work. This is for multiple types of these works to include what a trademark safeguards. Defending the intellectual property from possible violations generally takes registration, a good lawyer and ensuring the information is used properly.
This could mean registering on only a state level if the company has no aspirations of expanding until later or at all. However, this could lead to a national or global registration and other protections to ensure that it is safe from infringement around the world.
When applying and receiving a trademark for the phrase, word, symbol or brand, many owners start the next steps in ensuring that the information is protected. Because of the possible problems with the digital world and keeping content safe, a lawyer versed in intellectual property should be on retainer, and the owner or manager of the business may need to establish the trademark with the public in a memorable manner. This may be through certain types of marketing, pursuing green power and even intermingling with the neighborhoods and community where the organization is housed. The more interaction with the consumer public, the greater presence the company has.
Defending Intellectual Property Protections
It is important to seek protections for intellectual property as well as contact a lawyer for action against violations. This means monitoring for infringements, keeping the status updated and registered when the time limit for current registration is about up and keeping others from attempting to capitalize on the reputation of a company by copying or using similar trademarks. Once non-permitted use has been found, the business or organization should be contacted and informed that they must cease and desist. With the assistance of a lawyer, these letters are sent to the right person and then if ignored, federal lawsuits may be brought against them.
Bringing forth a lawsuit against violators of the trademark and other intellectual property or content may permit the owner to seek damages to include any profits that were gained through the use of the trademark, any form of damages caused through the violation and the case expenses of prosecuting against the violator. Additionally, it is generally possible to seek an injunction for the company to stop using the trademark until the resolution of the case is reached and the plaintiff’s legal fees are awarded. Other damages may be assessed and provided to the owner of the trademark that increase the amounts significantly.
There are some stages where the trademark or registration for an intellectual property is disputed. After this has been surpassed, there is a point that it is then registered officially, published and the proof has been filed with the corresponding office. For federal trademarks, there is a ten year period it may be used without the need for additional registration documentation and applications. It is crucial for the owner to ensure that the registration is maintained so that the intellectual property and information may be defended in court and from violators. This may require the use or need for a lawyer to pursue legal action.
There are usually other processes that are necessary based on the state, if the registration is for the entire United States or if there are global implications. The trademark sign should be used after the logo or brand so that the public understands that the company is legitimate and legally permitted to use the logo. This shows the consumer market that the intellectual property is owned validly and the brand may be used by the owner without repercussions. It is then up to the business to ensure brand loyalty, reinforce certain aspects that are positive and to keep violators from weakening the brand or confusion the public. For any infringements upon the intellectual property, the owner should contact a lawyer to determine if a lawsuit is necessary. Once the ten years has passed, continued registration is necessary for a trademark or to keep it maintained and valid in the state or country of origin.
If there are any violations such as someone using a symbol that is very nearly the same as the trademark owned by the company, it is vital to seek legal action to ensure it stops. The first step is to ensure the organization has a lawyer that has a background in intellectual property protections. Cease and desist paperwork is needed, but if this is ignored or nothing happens, a judge may need to deliberate and decide the outcome of a case.
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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer.