What is intellectual property?
Intellectual property is not a specific legal right but a collective term for a bundle of different legal rights including:
- confidential information
- trade secrets
Different things attract different types of protection. The point is that identifying the areas where you have intellectual property in your business allows you to work out what you own, what you don’t own, what you don’t know about, and what you have protected.
You can then make a commercial assessment about whether you spend money now to take ownership or to protect the intellectual property you are using.
When you go to value or sell your business, being able to identify and demonstrate that you have full rights to the intellectual property in your business can have a positive impact on the value of your business.
Protecting your intellectual property
Factors influencing decisions to protect or not protect intellectual property usually include:
- Lack of understanding about how to protect it
- Too costly. Some businesses have simply given up trying to protect their inventions
- Reputational and financial costs of failure in an action to protect
- Staff time involved in the process
- Overseas enforcement simply unaffordable.
So, is it worth spending money to protect your idea?
YES, where –
- you want to use the idea to make money
- your idea is more than just common sense
- your idea has a novel approach or specialised application
- you can prove you have put time, effort, or inspired thought into your idea
- the idea has commercial value
- you have identified a potential market.
NO, where –
- you don’t even know whether or not you can make money yet
- your idea is common sense
- your idea is a small variation of someone else’s idea
- everyone will want to buy it! (but you can’t say specifically who your target market will be)
- you don’t know how to make money with your idea; it is just such a great idea that you are bound to make money!
5 ways to protect your ideas
The main legal areas for protection are:
- Contracts – confidentiality, non-disclosure, non-circumvention
- Trade mark
How do you make a decision about what to do?
We understand that sometimes you just want to know if you really need help before you commit to anything. We are happy to have a quick chat with you to sort out what you may require. No obligations.
Our 10 minute chat is Free of charge.
Why Work With Us?
our passion to help others grow is at the core of Onyx Legal
Each member of our team have been involved in running their own business. We know what its like to finish the bookkeeping at night, to try and identify that point where you need a new team member but not sure if you can afford them, and to manage clients with Ferrari expectations and Hyundai budgets.
You need our support, rather than letting your legal issues distract you from your core business. We aim to create legal documents that you understand, and your clients or partners understand, without needing further legal interpretation every time you start a new contract.
Let us help you keep your legal agreements and advice simple, straightforward and something that fits your business.