Intellectual property (IP) is an important asset for any company. It is the creative expression of an idea, an invention or a brand. It is essential to protect your IP rights in order to ensure a monopoly of exploitation on your creations. Whether you are a business owner, an inventor or an artist, it is important to understand how to protect your IP rights. This article will provide an overview of the steps to follow to protect your rights.
The first step in protecting your IP rights is to understand what intellectual property is. This includes copyrights, trademarks, patents, designs and trade secrets. Copyright protects literary and artistic works, such as books, paintings, music and films. Trademark law protects a sign: it can be verbal but it can also be a logo or a sound sign such as a jingle. Patent rights protect inventions and trade secrets protect confidential business information.
Once you have identified the type of intellectual property you own, the next step is to register that asset. Apart from copyright, which arises with a work of the mind, intellectual property rights must be registered with the office in the country where you wish to be protected. For example, the INPI is the competent office for French trademarks, patents and designs.
Once this registration has been made, you will have an intellectual property right that will allow you to defend your creation in case of infringement. You will be able to exercise this right as you wish: for example, you will be able to conclude contracts on this right in order to be remunerated for each authorized use.
Concerning the business secret, it is usual to protect it by a confidentiality agreement. This contract will allow you to take legal action if your co-contractor violates its obligations.
Therefore, these IP rights will give you the means to defend your rights: first of all in a pre-litigation means by a letter of formal notice, then in a litigation manner, by taking legal action. It will be important to call upon a lawyer or counsel specialized in intellectual property and experienced.
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We offer our clients a dedicated and unique experience of expertise that is necessary for the exploitation of intangible assets. We will also endeavor to keep you informed and up-to-date about intellectual property and digital economic issues through our articles and newsletters written by the Dreyfus Legal Team.