What is Intellectual Property?
Intellectual Property covers many issues, but it is mainly centered around three areas: patents, trademarks, and copyrights.
Patents allow clients the opportunity to claim an idea or invention as their property under federal or international law, thus protecting it from unauthorized manufacture, sale, or use by others. Patents are applied for through a specialized process where applicants must show how their inventions work and what unique features distinguish them from past or present inventions. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office reviews the application and then issues patent rights to successful applicants.
Trademarks are the names, words, or symbols that clients use to represent or distinguish their company or product from someone else’s. Clients can obtain the rights to the use of a name or symbol by using it in association with a good or service. To ensure the fullest protection of their rights, they may also file a trademark with State authorities, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, or internationally.
Copyrights are used to protect the ownership of literary or artistic media. Books, art work, computer programs, video and audio productions, and architecture are just a few of the many materials that may be covered by copyrights.