If you are an entrepreneur, there is a lot you need to know about a lot of different things. In many cases, intellectual property may be one of them. If your company is centered around your own “secret sauce,” then you need to be sure that you stay competitive by protecting your ideas. By taking advantage of intellectual property rights in the United States, you can apply for a patent for any process, machine, composition, design, and many other things that can be considered useful and unique.
If this sounds like something your company is built around, it is important that you speak with an attorney to determine how you should handle your intellectual property. In order to be approved for legal protection by the United States Patent and Trademark Office, you must prove through a complex application that your idea is unique, useful, and non-obvious.
Seems simple, right? Maybe not. That’s why so many local inventors and innovators rely on the advice of a Tampa patent attorney to navigate the patent process. As it turns out, there is a lot you need to know about intellectual property as an entrepreneur, but maybe the application process isn’t one of them.
Know When To File For a Patent
Many businesses perform the same services, such as a roofing company or a convenience store. In cases like that, there is not necessarily and intellectual property that they have developed that would qualify for a patent. If your company is built around a piece of software that you and a team have developed that does something completely new though, you will want to apply for a patent in order to protect this technology from being knocked off. If your technology can be repeated by anyone in the market, you immediately lose your competitive advantage.
Learn About Cease and Desist Letters
If you have a trademark, patent, or copyright and have found that your protected intellectual property is being used by another entity, you can send them a Cease and Desist that informs them of your rights, and your plan to protect those rights. If the offending party chooses not to cease using your IP, then you can move towards litigation to protect your rights.
Consider Licensing Your Rights
When you hold the legal rights to your intellectual property, you are able to license the IP to other companies and determine the payment model you will use during negotiations with the other company. If your patent is in-demand, then you have a lot of power in these negotiations and can use them to significantly increase cash flow to your business.
Use Non-Disclosure Agreements