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Why is intellectual property essential…

Vanessa Bouchara

Updated on January 16, 2022

Why is intellectual property essential to protect?

Intellectual property refers to the set of rights that protect a creative work.

The term “intellectual property” covers two related branches of law: literary and artistic property (copyright and related rights) and industrial property (trademarks, designs, patents, etc.).

Thus, the law of literary and artistic property makes it possible to grant protection to the person who creates or elaborates a work of the mind.

The industrial property law allows to grant protection to the one who will have deposited a title of intellectual property such as for example a trademark or a patent.

Intellectual creations represent financial, intellectual and human investments and are in this sense substantial economic values, mainly in business life.

However, companies tend not to be sufficiently proactive in protecting their intellectual property assets.

While protecting intellectual property would allow them to reserve the exclusivity of their rights in an extremely competitive environment, companies are really asking themselves the question of the optimal protection of their rights when they are confronted with an infringement.

It is recommended that companies that do not have a legal department, and therefore an IP lawyer, ask themselves the essential questions relating to the protection of their intellectual property assets as soon as possible.

Learn more about intellectual property law.

The main questions to ask are:

  • Does my company have a creative activity?

    If so, it is necessary to ensure that all rights to creations created by external service providers or employees are transferred to the company.
    Once these rights have been assigned, the question of a possible deposit must be asked.
    For companies that frequently renew their collections and that have many references, a bailiff’s deposit can be considered and will allow them to prove a certain date.
    For very creative companies with a limited number of references, it may make more sense to register designs.

  • Does my company have one or more trademarks?

    If so, it is necessary to check if the trademark has been registered, if a prior art search has been carried out (this is essential and is often neglected) or if the trademark is distinctive (if it allows you to differentiate what your company offers from that of competitors, a descriptive trademark would not be protectable and would be difficult to oppose to third parties).

  • Does my company have patents and are they well protected?

  • Have my company’s rights been registered and protected where the company’s products or services are deployed (geographical scope of registration to be compared with the geographical development of the company).

It is therefore not necessary to work in the intellectual property field to protect yourself and to have the first reflexes.

Intellectual property is a strategic tool for companies, especially for small and medium-sized companies that want to establish themselves on the national and international markets.

Today, with the evolution of digital technology, the need to protect a company’s assets is only growing.

Counterfeiting is becoming commonplace, especially in the field of copyright and trademark law, and companies must anticipate by optimizing their protection as early as possible.

We must make intellectual property a differentiating asset for companies.

The issue at stake [de la propriété intellectuelle] is the law applied to the knowledge economy,” according to a report by the Commission on the Intangible Economy.

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