LaPlace Intellectual Property Attorneys
Protecting the Intellectual Property Rights of Individuals and Businesses in LaPlace
Have you created something unique with commercial value? Have you thought about how you will exercise your rights to exclusively use and profit from it as its creator? Have you given any thought to what you will do if you discover someone has stolen or misappropriated your creation? Seasoned legal professionals can help you register creations and enforce your rights when your intellectual property is used without your permission.
At Potts Law Firm, it’s all about leveraging our power and resources to protect the interests of our clients. Our LaPlace intellectual property lawyers are prepared to assist you with copyrights, patents, trademarks, and trade secrets. We have over 250 years of combined experience, and our collaborative team is well-versed in how to successfully navigate complex intellectual property matters, including enforcement actions. Whether you need assistance registering new creations or are having difficulty stopping the theft of your intellectual property, you will have our full support, and we will do everything possible to secure swift, optimal outcomes.
Call (985) 236-0573 or contact us online to discuss your needs with us in a free initial consultation. Same-day appointments are available, and our firm offers services in English and Spanish.
Types of Intellectual Property
Intellectual property refers to intangible products of the mind that require mental and/or creative effort to create. The value a piece of intellectual property provides stems from the creator or owner’s exclusive right to exploit it, as defined by intellectual property law. Limited intellectual property rights are automatically triggered when certain types of intellectual property come into existence, but other types of creations require registration to enjoy legal protection. It is always in your best interest to register your intellectual property as soon as possible, regardless of the intellectual property type.
Our LaPlace intellectual property attorneys can help you with:
- Copyrights. Movies, music, paintings, drawings, poetry, novels, computer software, and architectural design are all examples of creations that can be copyrighted. They are tangible expressions of a work that required artistic and mental effort to generate. Any original work that meets this requirement automatically receives some copyright protections when it is created, but these will rarely be sufficient to protect your interests as an owner or creator. You must register your copyright if you ever wish to file a lawsuit against someone who steals your copyrighted work or uses it without your consent. A copyright usually expires 70 years after the death of its creator, no matter who owns it, unless the creation was a “work for hire,” meaning an employee created it on behalf of their employer. Works for hire expire 95 years after it was initially published.
- Trademarks. Slogans, logos, symbols, and words are all trademarkable elements that help a company and its products and services stand out from competitors. Consumers rely on trademarks to differentiate companies, products, and services from each other. Trademarks operate on “first to use” rules, meaning literally whoever uses a mark first in a given geographic market automatically receives some intellectual property rights for that mark. Registering your trademarks is prudent if you intend to expand your operations, as registration guarantees your ability to exclusively use a mark in new geographic areas. Registration also allows you to more easily enforce your trademark rights, but to successfully register a mark, you must prove it is adequately distinctive and is actively being used in commerce (or will imminently be used in commerce). Unlike copyrights, trademarks do not expire so long as their owners continue to use and renew them.
- Patents. Inventions that are demonstrably useful, novel, and non-obvious are patentable. There are several subcategories of patents: Plant patents cover manufactured plant species, while utility patents protect unique processes, chemicals, and machines. Design patents protect the appearance of a product or the appearance of a product component. Patent protection is never automatic, as someone else could conceivably come up with a similar or identical invention. This makes prompt registration with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office especially important.
- Trade Secrets. Any proprietary information that has value because it is not known to people outside a business organization likely constitutes a “trade secret.” Businesses rely on trade secrets, such as formulas, processes, research, ideas, and client lists, to stay competitive. Some trade secrets are patentable. Though registering a patentable trade secret would give a company exclusivity to use it, it would also eliminate the secrecy of the information, and patents eventually expire. Businesses thus must carefully evaluate this type of information to decide whether it is more beneficial to patent it or protect it as a trade secret. For a trade secret to enjoy legal protections, the company must make a concerted effort to maintain its secrecy. This can be accomplished through the use of restrictive covenant agreements, such as nondisclosure and non-compete agreements, and other information security measures.
Whether you need assistance registering your intellectual property or enforcing your rights, we are ready to provide sophisticated guidance and advocacy. Call (985) 236-0573 or contact us online today.
I had a wonderful experience with this law firm.- Stephen P.
I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend him or any of the team at Potts.- Theo C.
The Potts Law Firm is a powerhouse of brilliant attorneys.- Molly H.
I would recommend Potts Law Firm for any and all legal matters that come my way in the future!- W. Gary
Great law firm!- Hugo G.
Intellectual property law gives you the right to exclusively make decisions about your copyrights, trademarks, and patents. You can elect to only use your intellectual property yourself or within your organization, or you might choose to license it to third parties under certain conditions. But what happens if someone accidentally or deliberately ignores your intellectual property rights?
Any unauthorized use of your intellectual property is a serious matter that can endanger your rights if you do not take sufficient action. As a general rule, if you do not fight to enforce your intellectual property rights, you stand to lose them. Consequently, you should get in touch with the driven legal professionals at Potts Law Firm as soon as you learn about any infringement, no matter its scope or severity. The first step to stopping the misappropriation will typically involve sending a formal request that alerts the infringing party to the violation. If this action is not sufficient or does not end the infringement, we may be forced to pursue additional legal remedies, such as filing a lawsuit against the infringing party.