How can I create an International Trademark?
It is possible to obtain a trademark registration outside the US both as an international trademark and/or a registration in a particular country. It is not necessary to first obtain a federal trademark registration in the US. However, once a trademark is registered in the US it is then entitled to certain priority rights in many other countries throughout the world, provided certain time limits and requirements are met. Taylor IP can submit the proper information to prevent your trademark from being used by others in foreign countries. The process of creating a domestic or foreign trademark should be done with an attorney to ensure all of the correct and proper procedures are taken.
How do I acquire a trademark?
Do you already have a trademark in the United States? Do you need to obtain a trademark? Taylor IP Patent, Trademark & Copyright Law can review potential trademarks and conduct an online search to obtain crucial information that can affect your specific trademark(s). It may seem as though creating a trademark by yourself could be an option; however, when Taylor IP services your intellectual property needs you will have a team of attorneys that can protect the information that is most important to you.
How can I create an International Patent?
A patent provides protection for your invention or idea. A patent gives the patent owner the right to prevent others from making, using or selling your patented idea for profit. It is also common for a client to need or want to expand their patent rights for their product or idea out of the United States. A US Patent only legally protects your rights within the boundaries of the United States. Several international treaties exist that provide for filing or obtaining an International Patent. The most common international patent is under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT), and most developed countries in the world are members of this treaty. However, a patent application which is filed under the PCT does not actually issue as an international patent. Eventually, the PCT application must be “nationalized” in one or more selected countries or regions, and a patent will issue under those countries or regions. On the other hand, other types of international patents will eventually issue as a patent. An example is a patent filed under the European Union (EU), which can be filed to cover all countries (states) which are part of the EU. When an EU patent is filed, it is usually a good idea to provisionally designate all EU countries, which gives the client the flexibility to decide later in which countries the EU patent will actually be covered by the patent. After the EU patent is examined and approved, then it is necessary to validate the patent in the EU countries for which patent protection is sought. This validation procedure includes the payment of a validation fee in each of those countries, and may include other formalities. The continent of Africa also includes an international treaty which covers most of the African countries.
Obviously, the patent process can take time, patience, and perseverance. Taylor IP offers our clients reliable services and the most current information regarding US, international and/or foreign patent protection for your invention.
How long is the Patent Process?
The patent process can typically take different lengths of time, depending on what is actually being patented. Various products and ideas can be awarded a patent. Most patents are utility patents or design patents. Taylor IP can determine which category best suits your product or invention. Patents generally last 14 years from the grant date or 20 years from the filing date, again depending on which category of patent is pursued. There are fees associated with securing a patent, and utility patents also require periodic payment of maintenance fees after the patent is granted for the time period that your patent is in existence. Taylor IP can answer any questions regarding your distinct patent questions.
Some individuals believe that going forward with the patent process can be done alone, usually primarily for monetary reasons. A simple Google search yields a very knowledgeable paragraph provided by the United States Patent and Trademark Office on this topic:
“There are times when you may desire a combination of copyright, patent and trademark protection for your work. You should consult an attorney to determine what forms of intellectual property protection are best suited to your needs.”
What is Intellectual Property?
Intellectual property is a creation of the mind such as inventions, symbols, names, designs, or other created works, to which one has protected rights through a patent, trademark, copyright, etc.
Intellectual Property or IP is divided into two categories:
- Industrial Property – patents; an exclusive right granted for an idea or an invention. A patent promotes growth, provides a new way of doing something, or enhances the quality upon a previous development. A patent provides rights and protection to the owner of the patent. Trademarks; an identifiable and unique sign that identifies the products and services provided by a person or enterprise in the marketplace.
- Copyrights – works relating to literary and artistic forms. Examples of works protected by copyrights include literary works such as books, poems, newspapers, plays, film, and music; artistic works such as, paintings, drawings, photographs, etc.
How to File a Trademark
A trademark is a brand name. It is a sign, symbol, or words registered by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office by use of a person or company to distinguish the goods or services of one provider from the next in the marketplace.
Filing a Trademark
- There are several steps for filing a trademark which should be taken into consideration:
- Hiring a trademark attorney: there are many laws and regulations pertaining to the trademark process that hiring an attorney can assist in the in depth process.
- Identify your Trademark: Every trademark application must include a clear representation of the trademark you want to file for registration.
- Identify the goods and services your trademark will apply to: You must be able to identify the type of goods or services in which your trademark will apply to in a clear, concise way.
- Trademark search: Searching the database from the USTPO before filing your application to determine whether or not your trademark has already been claimed or not.
- Filing the Trademark Application: The final process is filing your trademark and getting it registered.
What is Copyright Infringement?
Copyright infringement is a copyrighted work that is reproduced or distributed without the consent of the copyright owner for publication or sale.
As a copyright owner, you have exclusive rights to keep your copyrighted works protected, and a copyright attorney can assist in knowing your rights and litigate in any matters pertaining to copyright or copyright infringement. Copyright law is essential in providing the creator is able to reap the financial benefits of their work. Not all copying is piracy though. Fair use permits, the use of a copyrighted work without the permission of the copyright owner, maybe be used in some instances such as news, teaching, research, and reporting. Due to the new age of technology and the wide use of the internet, it allows easy distribution of some works and very difficult for copyright owners to protect and control their works once they are released to the public.
The complete laws on copyrights pertaining to copyright infringement can be found here: Copyright Law of the United States of America
How to Patent an Idea
To acquire a patent you need to make sure your idea or invention qualifies for a patent and you are able to describe all aspects of it. There are several steps to filing a patent. At Taylor IP, our patent attorneys will guide you through the process:
- Keep a record of your invention: Document every step of your invention or idea. Describe how you came up with the idea and describe every aspect of it in depth.
- Your invention must qualify for patent protection: your invention must be new and different from all previous inventions in some way.
- Thorough patent search: Our attorneys will do a thorough patent search to find similar patents in the technical field of your invention. Through research and analysis we will show how your invention improves upon earlier developments or is different from them.
- Prepare and file with the USPTO: Filing an application with the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
According to the US Patent and Trademark office:
“A U.S. patent for an invention is the grant of a property right to the inventor(s), issued by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The right conferred by the patent grant is in the language of the statute and of the grant itself, “the right to exclude others from making, using, offering for sale, or selling” the invention in the United States or “importing” the invention into the United States. To get a U.S. patent, an application must be filed in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.”
Retrieved October 17, 2013 from: http://www.uspto.gov/web/patents/howtopat.htm
Why Hire an IP Attorney?
Whether you’re filing for a patent, trademark, or copyright it can be a very daunting task. At Taylor IP, our entire firm is focused on intellectual property law specializing in patents, trademarks, and copyrights. Our attorneys stay up to date on the latest laws and regulations to make sure your inventions, works, ideas, and marks are protected. Our attorneys are registered with the US Patent and Trademark Office, making them eligible to register your applications through their office.
Understanding intellectual property law is very time consuming and takes years of experience to interpret. Are you willing to risk the consequences that come along with not filing your IP application properly?
There are strict laws in place to protect intellectual properties. If your rights are violated, an experienced attorney can help to recover lost royalties from infringement. If your case is successful, the person who violated your IP rights may be required to pay all of your legal fees and provide reimbursement for use of your IP without your permission.
For more details and information about the trademark process visit our Trademarks page, or contact Taylor IP with any questions or more advice on how to safely obtain a trademark, or visit our Contact Us page.