Protect Your Intellectual Property, or Protect Yourself Against an Infringement Claim
By securing intellectual property rights, inventors, artists, and entrepreneurs can ensure that an idea, creative work, or business name is registered and protected. And if you’re interested in acquiring (or just using) someone else’s protected work, you need to make sure that you don’t infringe on their rights along the way.
An intellectual property attorney can offer expertise on a variety of issues, including:
Whether you just want to make sure your IP rights are protected, or you’re on either side of a potential infringement action, a local attorney can provide the kind of specialized intellectual property help you need.
Looking for an Intellectual Property Lawyer?
At Lawyers.com, you’ll find a user-friendly search tool that allows you to tailor results by area of law and geography. You can also search for attorneys by name. Attorney profiles prominently display contact information, list topics of expertise, and show ratings—by both clients and other legal professionals.
Ready to Meet With an Intellectual Property Lawyer?
Before hiring a lawyer or law firm, make sure to speak directly—preferably in person—to the attorney who will be primarily responsible for handling your case. Consider bringing to the conversation a list of questions and any documentation related to your case. Remember that you don’t need to hire the first lawyer you consult and that, first and foremost, you want a lawyer you trust.
What to Ask an Intellectual Property Lawyer
When gathering your thoughts and documents, think about what you’ll want to ask the lawyer. Consider including on your list questions about:
- securing the rights to a new idea or invention, by filing for a patent with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
- obtaining (and defending the right to use) a protected business name or logo under federal trademark laws
- licensing and protecting copyrighted songs, movies, books, plays, software code, architectural designs, photographs, and more
- enforcing (or challenging) a nondisclosure or noncompete agreement related to intellectual property
- bringing a lawsuit for infringement or unauthorized misuse of intellectual property, and
- defending individuals or businesses who have been accused of infringement of someone else’s intellectual property rights.
- the lawyer’s experience handling intellectual property issues like yours
- the lawyer’s familiarity with different jurisdictions and offices (including federal court and the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, where relevant)
- when it comes to infringement actions and other adversarial cases, how often the lawyer goes to trial (as opposed to settling)
- who else will work on your case (preparing filings, performing research, etc.)
- attorneys’ fees (flat-rate? hourly?) and other expenses related to the case (including filing costs)
- how long the case might take, and
- the lawyer’s first impressions of your situation, and his or her thoughts on your best course of action.