Intellectual Property -- Copyright and Trademark filings and litigation
INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY ("IP"): IP is an area of the law which protects your unique works and concepts, whether you need to file a Copyright for art, music, or literature, or a Trademark for your rights on classes of goods you want to protect in commerce. The Firm can help you protect your ideas and defend your rights. Call the Firm today to discuss protecting your Intellectual Property.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
A copyright protects original works of literary, artistic, or graphic expressions, such as books, paintings, photographs, music, records, plays, movies, software, technical drawings or blueprints. A copyright protects against the copying of the specific work, but does not protect the idea or concept that is the subject of the work. Although registration is not necessary to claim the protection of copyright law, registration is required before commencing a copyright infringement lawsuit, and early registration enhances the remedies available against an infringer and provides for certain evidentiary presumptions. While the basic concept of copyrights may appear relatively straightforward, various questions frequently arise. When you hire a person to create something for you, who owns the copyright in the resulting work? Where is the line between the concept or idea and the protected expression of that idea? How dissimilar do two works need to be in order to avoid infringing the copyright of another? Call The Law Offices of Lauren A. Harris to have an experienced intellectual property attorney provide the answers to these questions and more.
Trademarks are words, designs, slogans, or symbols that are used to identify the products or services of one business entity and distinguish them from the products and services of others. Trademark protection can sometimes be obtained for a product’s trade dress, which is the total image of the product or its packaging, potentially including features such as texture, graphics, size, shape, color or color combinations. The decor of a business and even particular sales techniques can sometimes be protected as trade dress. Trademark law seeks to prevent confusion or deception by prohibiting others from using the same or similar trademark for the same or closely related products or services. Having an identifiable and distinctive mark or brand for a product or service can be an extremely valuable business asset, in part because, if properly used and protected, trademark protection lasts indefinitely. As with copyrights, federal registration of trademarks is available and affords enhanced rights and remedies to trademark owners. An unregistered trademark can be identified with the “TM” symbol. However, once a trademark is registered with the USPTO, the ® symbol can be displayed in conjunction with the mark. Obtaining sound legal advice concerning the selection, clearance, and registration of trademarks increases the likelihood of developing enforceable, enduring and valuable marks.
A trade secret is any information that derives value for its owner from being secret. The information can take innumerable forms, including a formula, pattern, compilation, program, device, method, technique or process. Whatever the nature of the trade secret, it must be capable of being specifically described and identified and must have been the subject of appropriate steps to keep it confidential. Unlike patents, trade secret law can, in theory, last indefinitely as long as the necessary steps are taken along the way to maintain its secrecy.