In the context of the tech startup world, intellectual property is the equivalent of gold. Such creations are the foundation of tech success, especially for companies just getting started and looking to differentiate their value offering from everything else on the market. Fail to protect your intellectual property and your company’s reputation will endure significant damage and lose competitive advantage. It is quite possible the failure to protect your intellectual property in the tech startup sphere will ultimately bankrupt your company. Below, we explain the basics of intellectual property protection in the context of the tech startup environment.
Verify You Have Rightful Ownership
It is a mistake to attempt to protect your intellectual property if you’re not completely certain you own that property. In some cases, the intellectual property in question was made when the creator was employed by another business as opposed to the current tech startup company.
Lean on an Intellectual Property Attorney for Invaluable Assistance
The sad truth is you might be at risk if you generated the idea in question while on-the-clock at a prior employer. Furthermore, the use of company resources to generate the intellectual property in question also muddies the legal waters. This is precisely why you need an experienced intellectual property attorney to review your case and enforce your rights to the fullest extent of the law. The bottom line is intellectual property law is egregiously complicated. There are seemingly countless rules on the books for the securing as well as the enforcement of legal rights. These laws and related legal tools are applicable to everything from designs to pieces of art, inventions and other creations.
Our savvy intellectual property attorneys are here to provide essential guidance for the comprehensive protection of your intellectual property. We will also help you formulate a strategy to avoid the many pitfalls business owners commonly fall into. Sidestepping even one of these potential pitfalls really does have the potential to save your business a ton of money and avoid potentially devastating legal consequences.
Researching the Intellectual Property
Protecting intellectual property in the world of tech startups requires the creation of a list of all proprietary ideas considered unique and/or of potential value that your startup owns. Everything from business concepts to inventions, new ideas for products/services, logos, slogans and ideas for product names should be properly protected with the right legal tools. Our intellectual property protection attorneys are here to help you determine if the idea in question qualifies for a patent, trademark, trade secret or copyright.
Registering the Proper Intellectual Property Protection
Registering the work is the optimal means of protecting your tech startup’s intellectual property. Once the work in question is properly registered, your claim will be public, ultimately discouraging others from using that work without your permission.
As an example, trademark registration must be filed to ensure you have the right to use a trademark symbol. Fail to register your trademark and your claim will be considered illegitimate. Filing for a provisional patent with an attorney’s assistance ensures your tech startup uses the proper patent-pending designation to dissuade other parties from infringing on the intellectual property in question.
Consider a Nondisclosure Agreement
Nondisclosure agreements, commonly referred to as NDAs, will help safeguard your intellectual property. These agreements are particularly important when your tech startup is attempting to raise money from prospective investors. This process requires your company to reveal proprietary information. Our attorneys are here to craft the perfect NDA for your tech startups’ unique aims. Once the NDA is created and signed by relevant parties, your intellectual property will be fully protected when prospective investors are reviewing the business plan and other highly sensitive information.