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Business Owners: Protect Your Mental Creations

Greg M. Popowitz | Assouline & Berlowe

If you own a business or are starting a new business, you are selling a service or a product. If those sales enter the United States market, you want to make sure to protect your business’ Intellectual Property. But what is Intellectual Property and why should you protect it?

Intellectual Property is often referred to as a bundle of rights regarding trademarks, patents, and copyrights. This bundle of rights help protect certain aspects of a business by stopping others from copying its Intellectual Property.

First, trademarks are source identifiers. That means when a consumer sees the Nike brand, the consumer knows it is the Nike company that is producing the quality products or services showing the Nike brand. Commons types of brands are a character mark (the term Apple), a logo/design (the Apple graphic), and slogans.

One of the key aspects of trademark law in the United States is that a brand must be used in business to receive protection. The business must be offering services or selling products in the United States market. If a brand is registered through the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), the owner of the brand will have rights to protect the brand throughout the United States. A unique fact is that a business owner can use th