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Intellectual Property

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Our Intellectual property attorneys provide legal protection to safeguard your creative work.

A copyright is a protection given to a creative work, such as a painting, a song, a movie, or a sculpture. A copyright protects published as well as unpublished works. Copyrights grant the exclusive right of reproduction to the creator, as well as the right to create works deriving from the original, distribute copies of the work, display the work, or perform the work (as with a song or play). A copyright exists as soon as a creative work is put into fixed and tangible form, however, the creator of the work cannot pursue an infringement lawsuit without registering their copyright.

The Library of Congress registers copyrights through the Copyright Office. The Copyright Office places the issuance of the registration on public record and issues a certificate of registration to the creator. For these reasons, it is vitally important to register your intellectual property. Certain things, such as slogans, logos, and titles, cannot be copyrighted, but may under specific circumstances qualify for trademark protection. Under current law, a copyright will last the life of its creator, plus 70 years.

Trademarks are symbols, designs, phrases, or words that distinguish where a product or good comes from, rather than the product or good itself. McDonald’s Golden Arches or Nike’s Swoosh are two of the most famous registered trademarks in the country. Service marks work the same way, but in respect to businesses that offer services rather than tangible products. The brown and gold shield logo of United Parcel Service (“UPS”) and the eagle of the United States Postal Service are both famous service marks.

Like a copyright, you do hold certain rights without registering your mark, but registration allows for a wider protection of your rights, such as the ability to bring a lawsuit to defend against its use by others, a listing in the patent office’s databases, public notice of your ownership claim, and more.

We routinely provide copyright and trademark searches, registration services, and aggressively litigate the unlawful infringement, dilution, and/or use of our client’s intellectual property and proprietary technology in federal and state courts.

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Florida Intellectual Attorneys - Bogin, Munns & Munns
Practice Areas

Intellectual Property

Copyright

Copyright

Let an intellectual property attorney help you copyright your book, movie, or song and protect your creative works.

Distribution Agreement

Distribution Agreement

Negotiating the right Distribution Agreement for your business early on solves headaches later. Get help today.

Trademarks

Trademarks

Get professional legal help when registering your trademark and avoid potential IP disputes down the road.

Licensing & Technology Agreement

Licensing & Technology Agreement

Licensing agreements involving website development, intellectual property, and software require special legal skills.

Have questions regarding intellectual property?

SEE Intellectual Property FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a trademark? And just what are service marks?

Trademarks and service marks are the legal protection afforded to a logo, symbol (including sounds and even smells), name, and/or words used to associate them with a business and to differentiate them from others.  The difference between the two is determined by the business type.  Trademarks are used for goods (such as Ray-Ban for sunglasses) and service marks are used for services (such as Roto-Rooter for plumbing).  It should be noted that in the previous examples, it is the name of the product and the service itself that gets the trademark, not the name of the business providing them.  Another example of how a trademark can be used is as a tagline. Wendy’s classic “Where’s the beef?” is an example of a trademarked tagline.  Even colors or shapes of packaging may be given service mark or trademark protection, respectively.

Trademarks and service marks can only be used for real products and services.  For example, a person cannot get a trademark for a fictional product called “Cow-In-A-Can” if they are not actually selling a product by that name.  However, federal law accounts for up-and-coming businesses by providing an “intent to use” application that can be filed before the business begins operation.

What types of penalties could I incur if I infringe on someone else's intellectual property rights?

Infringing on someone’s intellectual property rights is a serious matter. A court may grant an injunction against the infringing party until the matter can be resolved. If the defendant is found guilty, a court may award the plaintiff restitution in addition to monetary (and possibly punitive) damages. The losing defendant may also have their intellectual property rights revoked and be made responsible for paying court costs and fees. An individual who infringed another’s intellectual property rights may also be charged criminally and be subject to restitution and criminal penalties, including incarceration.

What is a copyright?

Copyrights are used to legally protect the rights of authorship. Creative works such as books, poems, music, computer programming and artwork can be protected by copyright. The ideas expressed by the creative work cannot be protected, just the means by which the ideas are expressed. For example, a poet can write a poem expressing their joy and sadness and copyright the poem itself, but they cannot copyright the ideas of joy and/or sadness.

How can We Help

Bogin, Munns & Munns Can Help With Your Intellectual Property Case

We routinely provide copyright and trademark searches, registration services, and aggressively litigate the unlawful infringement, dilution, and/or use of our client’s intellectual property and proprietary technology in federal and state courts.

We have offices in over 12 locations, including Orlando, Cocoa, Daytona, Orange City, Gainesville, Kissimmee, Leesburg, Melbourne, and Ocala. Fill out our Business Questionnaire or call 407.578.1334 today.

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Request a consultation by filling out the form below, or call us at 855.686.6752. We have over a dozen offices located in Orlando and across Central Florida. We’re happy to answer any of your questions.

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