Intellectual Property Rights

What are Intellectual Property Rights?

The right to intellectual property is the right to own the creations of one’s mind, such as inventions, literary and artistic works, designs, symbols, names, and images in commerce. The term “intellectual property rights” refers to legal rights that give creators protection for their original works, inventions, artistic works, scientific developments, and so on. For a certain period of time, they usually give the creator the exclusive right to use his/her creation. People can earn recognition or financial benefits from their inventions and creations under intellectual property laws, such as patents, copyrights, and trademarks. 

In order to foster an environment in which creativity and innovation thrive, the Intellectual Property system aims to strike the right balance between innovators’ interests and the larger public interest.

History of Intellectual Property Rights

Intellectual property rights are not a new concept. IPR is believed to have originated in northern Italy during the Renaissance period. Venice introduced a law in 1474 that defined patent rights as an exclusive right that could be owned by the owner. It is thought that the first copyright date back to 1440 from the invention of the printing press with replaceable/movable wooden or metal letters by Johannes Gutenberg. In the late 19th century, a number of countries considered it necessary to pass laws governing IPR. Two international conventions establishing the international system of intellectual property rights had been signed; 

  • the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property (1883).
  • the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works (1886).

What Are the Types of Intellectual Property?

Intellectual property rights can be divided into four categories: 

  • Patents
  • Trademarks 
  • Copyrights
  • Trade Secrets. 

Intangible assets are frequently protected by more than one of these types of intellectual property laws. Copyright law protects a tagline, but trademark law protects the name of a product.

1. Patents

One or more inventors acquire exclusive rights to their inventions under patent law, which protects inventions against unauthorized use. Patents are commonly used by technology companies to protect their investment in developing new and innovative products, as witnessed by the patent for the first computer. There are three types of patents:

  • Design patents

It is protection for the aesthetics of a device or invention. The ornamental design patents include a product’s shape (the Coca-Cola bottle), emojis, fonts, or any other distinctive visual qualities.

  • Plant patents

It safeguards new varieties of plants. Pest-free fruit trees are an example of a plant patent. The nature of the optical properties of the tree may also create a need for a design patient.

  • Utility patents

It is intended for products that serve a practical purpose and are useful. Some examples include software, automotive safety systems, and pharmaceuticals. This is the area of patent law that was the first and is still the largest.

2. Trademarks

The trademark law protects logos, sounds, words, colors, or symbols used by companies to distinguish their products or services. Examples of trademarks include Twitter’s logo, McDonald’s golden arches, and Dunkin’s font. While patents cover one product, trademarks may cover a group of products.

3. Copyrights

The Copyright Law protects the original creator’s rights with respect to original works of intellectual property. Unlike patents, copyrights must be tangible. For instance, you can’t copyright an idea. But you can write down an original speech, poem, or song and get copyright. Once someone creates an original work of authorship (OWA), the author automatically owns the copyright. But, registering with the IPO Pakistan Office gives owners a head-start in the legal system.

4. Trade Secrets

A trade secret is a company’s proprietary information that is not accessible by the public, has economic value, and carries information. Formulas, recipes, or processes can be used to gain an edge. Companies must actively protect proprietary information in order to qualify as a trade secret. Trade secrets can no longer be protected once the information becomes public knowledge. The assets that are intangible or tangible and that are trade secrets are defined in 18 U.S.C.  1839(3) as:

  • Business
  • Financial
  • Technical
  • Economic
  • Scientific
  • Engineering

Google’s search algorithm and the Coca-Cola recipe are two examples. Patents are public, but trade secrets remain private to their owners. 

What Are Some Examples of Violations of Intellectual Property?

The infringement, counterfeiting, and misappropriation of trade secrets constitute the most significant intellectual property violations. Examples of intellectual property violations include:

  • The idea is to confuse buyers into thinking they are purchasing a real brand by creating a confusing logo or name
  • Copying of copyrighted materials (even on a photocopier, for personal use) or recording video or music without authorization.
  • Plagiarizing another person’s patent and marketing it as your own
  • Producing patent-protected products without a license 

Intellectual property offers many protections equal to those of real property because it can be purchased, sold, or leased. Similar remedies are also available. There are several ways to resolve a dispute, including property confiscation, monetary damages, and cease and desist orders.

What Does an Intellectual Property Lawyer Do?

Like many areas of law, intellectual property attorneys’ responsibilities differ according to their niche. Lawyers may cover licensing, acquisitions, or creation. Some create and oversee strategies to protect intellectual property internationally and domestically. Right Law Associates comprises top attorneys in various fields such as Intellectual property rights and other legal matters.

However, there are three main components of IP law: counseling, protection, and enforcement.

1. Client Counseling

We counsel our clients to determine the best way to protect intellectual property and guide them in licensing and using it. An executive, for example, may hire an attorney from our law firm to research trademark availability. An expert lawyer helps leaders decide whether to change a design or eliminate it altogether if a similar mark already exists. Patent counselors use their technical knowledge to determine if and how a client’s patent may be infringed.

2. Intellectual Property Protection

Lawyers involved in the protection of intellectual property complete the processes associated with securing the highest available rights. Doing so involves preparing and transmitting an application with Pakistan’s IPO office. Our attorneys will also respond to issues or requests by the agency until the patent or trademark clears and is issued

3. Enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights

Lawyers who enforce intellectual property rights do so by guarding the owner against infringement. Litigation against violators in federal court includes criminal prosecution and enforcement for intellectual property rights. International enforcement is much more complicated and can involve local politics in the country where the infringement occurred. 

Do you want legal help in Intellectual Property Rights? Right Law can help!

Are you looking for an expert attorney to solve your intellectual property matters? You don’t need to be worried at all. Right Law Associates being the top law firm in Pakistan for the past 36 years serving in all legal matters such as Corporate Law, Trademark Law, and Intellectual Property Law, etc. Get the free expert consultation from our attorneys, just by sending an email to us. We will try our best to reach you in the best possible manner!

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