A common form of business litigation centers around intellectual property. By taking protective measures as a business owner, you can better your odds of prevailing in the courtroom should your intellectual property be compromised. However, there are various ways to protect intellectual property and many misconceptions surrounding their use. As an entrepreneur, it’s vital that know how they operate before taking action.
Here are three ways you can be proactive about protecting your business’ intellectual property.
Protect it with a patent.
If you’ve spearheaded the creation of something unique and extraordinary, you can apply for a patent to keep it within the company. A patent ensures that only you can legally sell, use, design, or import your property. Patents can protect process, methods and inventions. To be shielded, they must serve a beneficial and significant purpose.
Tie it down with a trademark.
Your company’s logo, brand, and slogans can be the backbone of recognition in the market. In fact, you can’t trademark something that isn’t distinctive. For example, if your company’s name is a word or phrase that is commonplace, it will be much harder for you to protect it and could lead to an overload of litigation. You may be able to avoid this by making simple yet effective alterations such as changing the spelling to something that is more unique.
Call it yours with a copyright.
If you work in the entertainment, creative arts, structural design or technological fields, you’re likely already familiar with copyrights. Copyrights can be used to protect countless works such as books, musicals, songs, choreographic moves, movies, architectural designs and computer software. Copyrighting work bars others from duplicating, performing, presenting or changing it.
Business litigation can require time and substantial amounts of money, depending on the outcome. Doing your research before applying can help to reduce the chances of going to court and keep your business operating smoothly.