What is the difference between copyright, trademark and patent?
Many small business owners mistakenly believe that intellectual property laws do not apply or cannot apply to them. On the contrary, the intellectual property rights of an enterprise may sometimes be the most valuable aspect of an enterprise. The company’s good reputation, processes and products are all extremely important aspects of the company. Intellectual property laws, including laws that create copyrights, trademarks, and patents, all help protect the company’s irreplaceable assets.
Here, we discuss the difference between copyright, trademark and patent, and how the registration process can help you protect the most important assets of your business.
Need to register a trademark?
Protect your company name and logo.
We make it fast, affordable and simple.
What is copyright?
Copyright protects original works in a tangible medium. It covers unpublished and published works.
Copyright is authorized by the U.S. Constitution. Copyright provides extensive protection for tangible items created by you or your company.Have a copyright Ensure that you or your business have the exclusive right to copy, publish or sell the author’s work.
Common examples of things that may be copyrighted include:
- Non-fiction and fiction works, including books, articles, poems, catalogs, advertisements, catalogs, speeches, etc.
- Musical works, including the music itself and accompanying lyrics
- Dramas, scripts, scripts and other dramatic works
- Sketches, drawings, cartoons, paintings, photographs and other graphic or graphic works
- Recordings and movies
- Compilation of existing information
Depending on your business scope, the work you do every day may meet the conditions for copyright protection.
What is a trademark?
A trademark is any design, symbol, word or phrase that can identify your company or product and distinguish them from other companies or products. Generally speaking, anything that can clearly identify your business can be considered a trademark. Examples include:
- Your business name
- Your logo
- product name
- Product packaging
- Symbol or design
If your company has a name or logo, you may want to consider registering those names or logos to prevent unauthorized use by others or companies.
Services can also get some protections, but these protections are called “service marks”, not trademarks.
What is a patent?
Patents are used to protect inventions. It will prevent others from making, selling or using your invention for a period of time. It prevents others from stealing your good ideas and profiting from them.
The contents of patent protection include:
- chemical composition
- Industrial process
Even if something that occurs naturally is considered to be a new discovery, it cannot be patented.
Unlike copyrights and trademarks, patents only provide protection for a certain period of time.
- Design patent: 15 years
- Utility patent: 20 years
- Plant patent: 20 years
Certain extensions and adjustments may also be available.
How to register my copyright, trademark or patent?
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is responsible for overseeing and approving trademarks and patents. The United States Copyright Office is responsible for copyright registration in the United States.
The inventor must apply for a patent within one year of the public disclosure of the invention.In general, it’s best to conduct a preliminary search to determine if any of these inventions have been previously patented and whether you qualify for Requirements for obtaining patents.
You must meet certain qualifications to obtain an invention patent, and the application process may be a bit arduous. An invention that is eligible for a patent must be both “novel” and “non-obvious.” In other words, it must be different from all other products, but these differences do not have to cover the entire product. For example, your invention can use components that are similar or identical to another product, as long as they are used in different combinations or include other components.
You don’t have to register a trademark to use it, but registration can provide you with some other legal protections, and if it is not registered, they may not.
Trademark registration It will provide you with legal speculations about trademark ownership, which is very important if you want to start a legal battle over whether to use the name or logo in the first place. You can also benefit by asserting your legal claims in federal court.
Like patents, registered trademarks also involve an application process. However, applications for registered trademarks are not as extensive as obtaining patents. Normally, you must describe the product for which you want to register the trademark, list the method of use, and pay the registration fee. However, before starting the process, you should search to make sure that no one else has registered a trademark that is the same or substantially similar to yours.
Your work is protected by copyright from the day it was created. However, if you want to increase protection, you can still register with the U.S. Copyright Office.
Just like a registered trademark, a registered copyright can be a good indication that you are the owner of the work, and if you encounter any legal problems in the future, you can prove the time when you created the work based on the registration. Registered copyright may also cause additional financial losses in litigation, and if you also have to go to court, you may be able to repay attorney’s fees.
Just like registered trademarks, copyright registration also has its own application process.
Do I need a lawyer to register my copyright, trademark or patent?
You can complete the registration or application process of copyrights, trademarks and patents without a lawyer. However, you may need help searching for registrations and ensuring that you meet the requirements of the application process.use Rocket lawyer trademark registration service If you want to avoid the hassle of searching, evaluating the proposed trademark, filling in the correct form and filing. Our Rocket Lawyer trademark experts can perform all these tasks for you at a reasonable price.
Give a helping hand Rocket Lawyer on call® lawyer If you have specific questions about your intellectual property rights, or if you want to discuss various aspects of the registration process, you can do it yourself, and when it is feasible to ask a lawyer for help.
This article contains general legal information and does not contain legal advice. Rocket Lawyer is not a law firm, nor is it a substitute for a lawyer or a law firm. The law is complex and changes frequently.Seek legal advice Ask a lawyer.