Whether you own a construction-related company or you develop real estate, it is vital that you protect your company’s intellectual property interests. A failure to do so could not just expose your company to potential liability, it could also cost your company time, resources, customer loyalty and the very integrity of your brand.
When most people hear the term “intellectual property,” they think about Silicon Valley, artists, musicians, writers and inventors. Yet, every single company that engages in marketing efforts has a valuable interest in its own intellectual property. Your company will need to protect these interests proactively and may be compelled to protect them in response to accusations of infringement.
Types of intellectual property protection
There are four kinds of intellectual property safeguards that you should be aware of, as each could be uniquely valuable to your company’s interests.
- Trademarks: Formal trademark registration safeguards resources that companies use in marketing and branding efforts. For example, company names, URLs, logos and catchphrases can all be trademarked.
- Copyrights: Copyright registration protects original works of creative authorship, including text-based works, art, musical compositions and certain kinds of software.
- Patents: Seeking a formal patent will allow you to protect your company’s novel, useful and reproducible inventions, processes and product designs.
- Non-Disclosure Agreements: These contracts help to ensure that a company’s trade secrets remain private.
Taking steps to protect intellectual property interests
You’ll need to directly address your company’s intellectual property interests when others are infringing upon them. You’ll also need to directly address these interests if your company has been accused of infringing upon the rights of others.
By taking a proactive approach to your company’s intellectual property interests, you can minimize its risk of liability and maximize the value of the intellectual property that you possess. If you don’t yet have a comprehensive strategy to protect your company’s intellectual property in place, now is the perfect time to develop one.