What is the main purpose of intellectual property law?
Intellectual property law (IP law) is a collection of rules that aim to encourage the creation and distribution of positive knowledge. The main purpose of IP law is to encourage innovation and creativity so as to provide benefits both for society and for business interests, while providing an opportunity for content creators to earn profits from their works. This is done through the protection of their intangible works (ideas, concepts, etc.) by giving them legal status.
There are four main types of intellectual property, or IP. These include copyright, which protects works such as books and music; patents, which protect original inventions; and trademarks, which protect brand names for products and companies; and trade secrets, which protect confidential business information.
These protections have time restrictions to promote innovation, while still offering long-term incentives for the creation and distribution of knowledge.
Copyright law protects a wide range of expressions, in forms such as books, music, and art. The main purpose of copyright law is to grant the creator of such works a set of exclusive rights over their work for a limited time period.
Copyright law grants the creators control over how others can copy, distribute, and make derivative works by their original creations. For example, that means authors can choose to not allow others to reproduce or adapt their work, or they can license permission to others under specific conditions.
Trademark law protects words, phrases, symbols, or designs identifying the source of the goods or services of one party and distinguishing them from those of others. It aims to protect brands for companies so as to avoid customer confusion regarding the quality of their products. For example, Adidas uses three stripes to uniquely identify them, Dunkin’ Donuts uses pink and orange letters, and apple uses the logo of an apple.
Trademarks are governed by state and federal laws. The Lanham Act is the major trademark law in the United States, established under Title 15 of the United States Code (Intellectual Property). The act governs trademarks used to identify goods and services in commerce.
A Los Angeles Trademark Lawyer can help you to protect your business’ trademarks, by registering with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). If someone uses a confusingly similar mark to yours, they are infringing your trademark rights. To avoid infringement, companies ensure that their brand names are legally protected through trademarks.
Patent law is a form of intellectual property that protects inventions, products, machines, and processes. In patent law, government approval of patents bestows upon the inventor ownership of their creation for a limited time period. Patent law grants inventors the right to exclude others from making, using, or selling their inventions. An inventor can apply for a patent with the government for their new invention that provides something that is novel, non-obvious and useful in some way.
Patent protection allows inventors to plan ahead knowing that they will have 20 years of exclusive use of their invention after it is patented, provided that the patent is maintained. In exchange for exclusivity to use their invention, inventors must disclose how their invention works and the idea behind it. This way, people can understand and improve upon what is already known.
Patents are granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), a part of the United States Department of Commerce, in accordance with the terms of the patent law that was passed by Congress.
A trade secret is a formula, process, device or compilation of information that gives its holder an opportunity to obtain an advantage over competitors who do not know or use it. To qualify as a trade secret under the law, this information must have economic value and be subject to efforts to maintain secrecy (it must not be disclosed to any outsider of the business).
An interesting fact about trade secrets is that they can be safeguarded without any registration. However, necessary steps must be taken by the business owner to preserve the confidentiality of the business.
How can an Intellectual Property lawyer help you?
Intellectual property law is a vast field with many moving parts. Patent infringement, copyright violations, trademark disputes are just some of the countless legal issues that can come up concerning intellectual property. An IP lawyer can help you navigate these waters and protect your company’s interests in the event of an infringement suit.
An IP attorney can help you to protect your business’ intellectual property, including patents, trademarks and copyrights. Businesses of all sizes may be targets for IP infringement by competitors. Litigation can cost hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars in damages and legal fees, which is why many businesses choose to hire an IP lawyer to represent them. An IP attorney can keep an eye out for potential infringements and prevent them from occurring, as well as ensure that your business is properly protected.
If you are in need of an experienced Los Angeles IP lawyer, contact us now!