Creating a business plan that outlines the process by which you plan to bring your invention to market can be essential for ensuring your enterprise is successful.
What is intellectual property litigation?
Intellectual property litigation is the process of pursuing legal action in court against a party who has infringed your intellectual property rights.
When your business expands to include employees or contractors that work alongside you, the rules governing intellectual property become somewhat more complicated.
When brainstorming a name or slogan for your business, it is important to remember that not all trademarks are made equal. While a mark may play well with your consumers or describe the products that you are selling to the perfect degree, that may not make it eligible for federal protection.
A good website can be one of the valuable assets of a business. It provides immediate access to information about the goods and services the business sells and can act as a point of purchase. When someone else is using a domain that is identical or similar to your trademark or trade-name, this can confuse your customers and be financially damaging to your business.
For even the most novel and useful invention, a lack of awareness in the marketplace of the invention and its benefits can result in poor commercial performance. Even if you do not intend to sell your invention directly, awareness could greatly increase the value of potential opportunities to license or sell your rights.
Your confidential and proprietary business, financial and technical information forms the trade secrets of your business. Secret technology, secret recipes, secret processes, and secret customer data can all constitute trade secrets in particular circumstances.
The Internet allows producers and owners of creative works to share them freely and easily with customers and the public. However, the same ease of uploading and downloading allows infringers to illegally share copyrighted works with others.
When deciding whether to incur the cost of seeking intellectual property (IP) rights through a government intellectual property office, you may wish to consider whether your idea or work is eligible for registration, the value of IP rights as assets, the value of IP rights in increasing profitability, and the value of IP rights in deterring competitors and defending a market space.
For many owners of intellectual property rights, the transferable nature of these rights greatly enhances their value. Their transferable nature allows these rights to be sold, licenced, bequeathed, and used as collateral.
Taking your invention from an idea to a marketable product can be difficult and expensive. In order to get the product into the consumers' hands, money will need to be spent on development, production and marketing. Further, a number of other costs will inevitably arise, from protecting your intellectual property . . .
As with any step or component of a business plan, the value of seeking a patent must be evaluated in light of associated costs. A patent application process can often take a couple of years, with professional and government fees arising at various stages.
You have come up with a brilliant new, useful and inventive product, but commercializing an invention can be very expensive. Between production costs, marketing costs and the cost of securing intellectual property rights, many inventors simply do not have the funds to bring their inventions to market.
Innovation, creation and authorship are concepts that are often associated with growth and vitality. However, some consideration should also be given to what happens to intellectual property rights owned by an individual when that individual passes away.
Choosing a name for your business and building your own brand can be fun and exciting, but if you do not have the right information at the outset, your choices can have some serious legal consequences.
For many businesses, intellectual property can be a main asset, which increases business value and market potential. However, the value of intellectual property can only be preserved if the intellectual property rights are enforced and instances of infringement are dealt with when they arise.
In 2014, the Canadian government proposed several amendments to the Trademarks Act, which governs trademark use in Canada. Through Bill C-31, The Economic Action Plan Act 2014, No. 1, and 2016's Bill C-30 aiming to implement Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement (CETA), the Trademarks Act will undergo substantial changes due to take effect in the next two years.
Receiving a cease and desist letter or a statement of claim alleging that you have infringed someone's copyright can be an upsetting experience.
A great deal of protectable intellectual property is created by employees and contractors. From inventions to new product designs to creative works, employees and contractors make many contributions.
. . . It is common to think that copyright privileges entitle the owner only to a monopoly on financial gains from their works, and in many cases, only these economic rights get used by intellectual property owners. However, creators are entitled to another set of rights that comes with being the author of an original work: moral rights.
When thinking of trademarks, it is common to focus on concrete and distinctive combinations of words and/or images, such as brand slogans or product logos. Imagining that something like a pattern on a scarf or the shape of a designer handbag could constitute intellectual property is not something that many business owners think about. But maybe it should be!
Trademarks are commonly thought of as combinations of words and/or images used to define a business's brand. However, other types of branding, such as sound marks, can be equally useful in ensuring that the goodwill built by your marketing efforts is not compromised by competitors.
As a consumer in Canada, it is likely that you have seen the "™" and "®" on commercial products and services. These symbols are meant to signify that the brand name or slogan in question is subject to trademark protection . . .
Injunctions are often sought by plaintiffs as remedies in intellectual property infringement proceedings.
A cease-and-desist letter often precedes intellectual property (and other) commercial litigation. It is meant to inform the recipient that they have allegedly infringed a legal right of the sender and, at the very least, asks them to stop, or cease, their actions or face potential legal action.
When a trademark application is filed for registration in Canada, anyone is entitled to oppose it on one of four grounds provided in the Canadian Trademarks Act.
Consumer brand awareness and goodwill are crucial to business success. However, the brand that resonated with your target market when you originally launched is not guaranteed to continue attracting your consumer base in the same manner a few years post market entry.
The Canadian patent application examination process typically involves a predictable series of events.
Obtaining a registered trademark can go a long way in ensuring that your business is protected from competitors. By registering a trademark in the jurisdiction where you conduct business, you can capitalize on the goodwill and popularity that your brand has or will obtain in the process of commercialization.
By default, intellectual property is owned by the individuals who have created it and, where applicable, registered or patented it in their jurisdiction. However, there are a number of circumstances under which intellectual property may need to be, or is, licensed or transferred to another.
As the patent process can take years, one way to capitalize on your patent investment immediately is to notify the public that you have applied for a patent.
What is a patent? Patents are a type of intellectual property protection that applies to new inventions and innovations, and are essentially a legal safeguard of proprietorship of the invention. They are essentially a reward and incentive for ingenuity.
What is a trademark? A trademark (also referred to as trade-mark or trade mark) is a way to claim and protect the rights to your brand, slogan, logo, or any other manifestations of your corporate image, and, with that, the goodwill and reputation they have acquired with customers.
What is a copyright? The purpose of a copyright is to protect owners of creative works such as music, poetry, literature and art while inspiring creativity and continuous production of such works regardless of their commercial value.
What is an industrial design? An industrial design (referred to as a design patent in the United States) is a form of intellectual property that protects the aesthetic or ornamental parts of a product.
In the past decades, the knowledge economy (the sector of national the economy that is based largely on intangible assets) has grown substantially across the world.The economies of developed countries such as Canada and the United States are becoming increasingly oriented toward innovation . . .
In developed countries around the world, there is an ever-growing shift toward the knowledge economy, or industries based on innovation and intangible assets. As of 2008, intangible assets have composed 31.2% of all wealth in Canada, and the proportion continues to steadily increase.
How important is intellectual property? Intellectual property is an economic driver in Canada, the U.S. and Europe: 51% of Canada's economy is represented by knowledge-based industries; over time, Canada is becoming increasingly dependent on industries of intangible goods and industries propelled by research and development.
Should I Use a Non-Disclosure Agreement or File a Provisional Patent Application to Protect My Invention from Others?
It's a dilemma familiar to many inventors: you want to keep your invention secret to make sure you can benefit from it, but you're eager to share the results of your hard work and creativity.
Obtaining a patent ought not be the last step in commercializing your invention. Unless you plan to hold on to your patent as a deterrent for industry competitors, you may choose one of several paths available to commercialize your patented invention or monetize your patent . . . This article deals with licensing.
One question that generally comes to mind with a new idea or invention is how to protect it . . . The next, and related question concerns whether another party is going to sue you for selling something they have already patented.
An industrial design (or design patent) is a form of intellectual property protection available for design innovators in Canada, the United States and other jurisdictions across the world. It is focused on protecting the visual features of an article, namely its design, shape, pattern or ornament.
The process of taking your invention from an idea to a fully operational business venture can be quite challenging. During this time, you may be inclined to share your idea with potential investors to evaluate its profitability, or advertise it through other channels to showcase your ingenuity or check the market potential. However, if you are eventually hoping to protect your rights with a patent or industrial design registration, you may be endangering your rights by revealing your invention or design to others before you apply for protection.
When you are developing your business, it is important to have a distinct and unique brand that is recognizable by consumers as a symbol of quality and satisfaction. This type of brand, however, is vulnerable to being infringed by competitors in an effort to reap the positive associations it evokes with consumers.
With the reach of the Internet, your brand may extend (or may soon extend) outside of Canada. As registering your trademark in Canada gives you exclusive rights only in Canada, registration of your trademark in other jurisdictions must be done separately.
Entrepreneurs ought to put intellectual property management and protection at the forefront of their concerns in a new business venture. But between daily operations and a focus on growing the business, action to protect innovations and brand reputation is sometimes pushed to the backburner.
If you think your patent, copyright or trademark rights have been infringed, you need to ask yourself the following questions . . .
The development of intellectual property assets is crucial to the innovation, competitiveness and sustained growth of an entity. These assets may also be leveraged as another source of revenue, strengthening overall profits and diversifying risk.
Building a brand is crucial to the growth and sustained success of a business or enterprise. Accordingly, some aspects of a brand may entail valuable and protectable forms of intellectual property.
Most successful businesses are built on innovative ideas. To encourage investment in research and development and to help with the commercialization of new technologies, governments grant patents to applicants of allowable patent applications.
According to the Patent Act and Patent Rules, an applicant who files a Canadian patent application must pay maintenance fees to maintain the application. Maintenance fees must be paid for each one-year period from the second anniversary of the filing date of the patent application to the nineteenth anniversary . . .
A corporate name used as the company’s brand is one of the most valuable trademark assets of a business. Your brand will represent the quality of your goods and services and evoke a particular image and reputation amongst consumers. A strong brand will help facilitate sales of goods and services with which it is identified.
In Canada, it takes an average of 37.8 months from requesting examination (which may be done at filing) to get a patent. In the United States, it takes average of 25.7 months from the filing of a patent application to get a patent.
In Canada, trademark rights can be acquired for both registered and unregistered trademarks. While a trademark does not need to be registered to be protectable, registration of a trademark provides significant benefits for the trademark owner including . . .
A list of sources of funding and grants for innovators in Canada.
Foreign Associates: Information and Documents Needed for Canadian Trademark Application Filings in the Canadian Trademark Office
This page is intended to inform lawyers and trademark agents located outside of Canada as to what documents and information will be needed before the Canadian Trademark Office for a corresponding Canadian trademark application filing.
In brief, a patent search is only the first step in a patentability assessment. A patentability assessment includes a patent search, a detailed analysis of the references uncovered and a written report on patentability.
Generally speaking, prosecuting patent applications in Canada is similar to prosecuting patent applications in the United States. Here are particular features of the Canadian Patent Act and Patent Rules that an instructing agent should take note of . . .
You need to concern yourself with intellectual property rights at the start of any new business. If you fail to respect the intellectual property rights of others, you may become liable for monetary damages and you could be forced to redesign your product or service or to rebrand your products, services or business.
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