Intellectual property law houses a few different subcategories. If you own a company in Tyler TX, it is important to know what type of intellectual property law you need to implement when it comes to protecting your intellectual property. We hear the terms trademark and copyright used all the time, but it’s true that most people don’t know the difference between the two.
Copyright law protects the owner of an idea only if that idea has been turned into a tangible product such as a book or work of art. Copyrights are only valid for the life of the creator plus 70 years for works that are done by individuals. The time is less for products made by a company. Further, a copyright cannot be abandoned and the owner of a copyright doesn’t even have to produce it in order to pursue those infringing upon the copyright. However, if a company doesn’t go after a potential infringer as soon as possible, the infringer can go through with a lawsuit and claim implied consent due to you or your company’s lack of action.
Trademark law, on the other hand, covers the logos, artwork, and phrases used to distinguish and represent companies. Popular trademarks include the Coca-Cola logo and restaurants like Burger King and McDonalds. As long as trademarks are registered and actively used, they can be perpetual, unlike the limited life of copyrights. However, if the trademark is not actively used, it can be abandoned or the registration can be cancelled.