Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Intellectual Property 101: What Your Business Needs To Know About Patent Law; Forbes, July 13, 2017

Art Neill, Forbes; Intellectual Property 101: What Your Business Needs To Know About Patent Law

Co-author Teri Karobonik contributed to this post*

"Patents often seem more mysterious than copyrights and trademarks. Everyone has read a book that has copyright notices attached to it, and you encounter trademark protected consumer products every day. You may even have your own brand as a business owner.
But patents, because they involve the type of nonobvious inventions inside the computers we use to read our books and inside the factories where those consumer products are made, may seem harder to conceptualize.
Because patent protection always requires formal registration (in the United States), and because patent applications generally require experienced lawyers to create them (and lots of money to file them), there are good reasons why some inventors and entrepreneurs decide to forgo patent protection altogether. That said, it’s important to understand how patents can affect your startup or your new product.

Existing patents may hinder your ability to create certain products without a license, while filing your own patents could create another revenue stream to capitalize on your new invention.
In this third part of this four part series (see part 1 on Copyright and part 2 about Trademark law), we’ll break down another of the 4 main types of intellectual property (Patent) and explain:
  • what patents protect;
  • how patent protection is granted;
  • whether registration is required,
  • when you should apply for a patent, and if you’ll need help from an attorney to it;
  • how long patent protection lasts;
  • what rights you are granted if you do qualify for patent protection."

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