How to identify your company’s Intellectual Property
Catherine Bonner, Eleanor Coates
It is often the case that there is more IP in your business than you realise. It’s important to take steps to correctly identify and regularly check all the IP within your business, so you can successfully protect your IP and defend your rights.
Typical rights your business may have are trade marks (protecting your product name, your trading name or Company name, ‘brand’ mark or ‘house’ mark), your logo, colour combinations, unique design features in the packaging of your products, copyright of your web pages, databases, design documents, unique and functional features that could be protected with patents and patent applications
It’s important to regularly review your rights
IP rights are dynamic and ever evolving, so it is important to make sure you regularly review your rights with your IP Attorney.
Product development and changing trends mean you may undertake activities such as varying your packaging, launching seasonal products, bringing in technological improvements or updating the look and feel of your products – they all have the potential to impact on your existing IP Rights.
We routinely conduct IP audits to ensure we’re always proactively looking after our clients’ portfolios. It’s worth noting that funding may be available for your IP Audits from the UK Intellectual Property Office via local Enterprise organisations.
You should always seek professional advice if you’re unsure about the IP in your business. We’re often asked to conduct Intellectual Property awareness presentations for companies and these interactive and informative sessions can really help you to engage in a company wide effort to identify and protect your IP, as well as raising awareness of its importance.