Protection of Intellectual property often goes un-noticed by the business owners. Very few business or start-up owners understand the importance of safeguarding their Intellectual Property in long run. It is therefore highly vital for a business owner or a startup owner or a creative person or an inventor to have clarity about the concepts of Trademark, Copyright and patents.
A trademark is a symbol, logo, design, word, phrase, color, sound or a combination of these which is used for the purpose of trading goods or providing services. It indicates the source of goods and services and distinguishes them from the goods and services of others. It provides exclusivity of rights to the use of a trademark in relation to the product or service.
Scope of Trademark Protection: Indian trademarks are divided into 45 classes where classes 1 to 34 are for goods and classes 35 to 45 are for services. This categorization forms a hierarchy of which trademark belongs to which category.
Separate registration applications have to be made for the registration of name logo and slogan.
A trademark owner can be an individual, business organization or any legal entity. The trademark registration is valid for 10 years which can be renewed further. You can find more details about the trademark registration cost.
Benefits of Trademark registration: Registration of a trademark provides legal proof and public notice of the ownership. Registered trademarks use the ® symbol. A registered trademark retains the exclusivity of the associated goods or services in the market and prevents others competitors from using similar kinds of marks or texts in their branding. The registration of trademark is for brand establishment and trust inculcation in the minds of the customers.
A copyright is also a tool to protect intellectual property which can be in the form of literature, sound recording, paintings or sculptures, books or poetry or screenplays etc. It grants the exclusive right to the creator of the work to specifically copy or reproduce or publish the work for monetary gains or otherwise. It doesn’t specifically require registration of the copyright.
Scope of Copyright Registration: Registration of copyright provides the creator of the artistic, dramatic or musical work the exclusive rights to use and distribute their creation by prohibiting any person other than the creator to reproduce or sell the copyrighted work online or offline. For an individual owner, the term of copyright is the lifetime of the author plus 60 years whereas for a non-individual owner, a copyright may last up to 60 years from the date of the publication.
Benefits of Copyright Registration: The symbol © is used for protection of copyrighted original works. It doesn’t mandatorily require registration but registration proves originality. Copyright registration is required if you anticipate contravention. Copyrights are valid for the lifetime of the author plus 60 years. The fee for registration of copyright varies according to the work in question. For registration or copyright in a literary, dramatic, musical or artistic work, you can learn more at cost for registering a copyright in India.
Patent is an exclusive right or legal document which is granted when the invention in question is found to be new, novel, contains inventive step and has industrial applicability. A patent granted for an invention gives right for a limited time to stop others from making, using or selling the invention without the permission from the patent owner. A patent can also be licensed, mortgaged, bought or sold.
Scope of Patents: Patents are territorial rights, so an Indian patent will give patent owner the rights in India to make, use and sell his patented invention. The patent owner can even stop others from importing products into Indian territory , if the patent owners hold Indian patent. In India Patent filing and patent prosecution is governed by The Patent Act, 1970 and The Patent Rules, 2003. The patent application can be made alone or jointly by the inventor, assignee, legal representative of deceased inventor or assignee.
Benefits of Patent: The patent is granted for 20 years from the date of application for which renewal fees is required to be paid every year. If the fee is not paid within the stipulated time, the rights will cease to exist. A patent protects an invention for 20 years, but it cannot be renewed beyond that. A provisional patent lasts for a year. The fees to be paid with the patent application is INR 1600/- for an individual applicant. Further patent fees details can be obtained from Patent Fees For Obtaining a Patent in India. It has to be understood that a patent doesn’t give a right to make or use or sell an invention, in fact a patent is a right to exclude others from making, using, selling or importing the patented invention during the patent term.