You registered your intellectual property (IP) with the appropriate government agency, or you are relying on common law for your trademark. Congratulations! You may believe that now your ownership rights are protected, as they should be. However, others can still intentionally or unintentionally infringe on your rights.
If you believe someone has pirated your patented, trademarked, or copyrighted work, you should speak with an Alpharetta IP infringement lawyer at Sparks Law. Our skilled attorneys can help protect your inventions, brand name, logo, and artistic creations.
There are three major types of intellectual property: copyrights, patents, and trademarks. Copyrights protect creative works, such as paintings, books, photographs, movies, and music. Patents protect inventions, designs, and certain plants. Trademarks protect a company’s logo, name, slogan, and packaging.
Importantly, intellectual property is not all the same when it comes to protecting it. An experienced IP lawyer at our Alpharetta office will look at the circumstances of each situation involving suspected infringement.
People who utilize, build, or sell patented goods (or the process for making them) are infringing on the patent, whether they are aware the invention was patented or not. Utility patents protect the owners’ rights for twenty years as long as the patent is registered.
If consumers are likely to be confused by an almost identical logo or slogan, trademark infringement may be at play. Trademark owners must send cease and desist letters or file lawsuits when they discover infringement. Failure to actively protect trademarks can lead to a loss of exclusivity rights by the owner. Common law trademarks, or those that are not registered, are still protected in a geographic area, while registered trademarks are protected nationwide. Our knowledgeable attorneys can help take the proper legal action for any suspected trademark infringements.
Copyright holders have rights to certain actions. If a third party performs any of these actions, it may amount to infringement:
Third parties must get permission from the copyright holder before they are permitted to copy, display, or distribute the holder’s creative works. Holders must show that a third party had access to and copied the creative work to prove infringement.
If copyrighted work shows up unauthorized on a website, a skilled attorney at our firm can help the owner send a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) Takedown Notice to the internet service provider. That provider could also be liable for infringement if the content is not removed.
A local IP lawyer would study the circumstances of a client’s case for infringement before determining an effective course of action.
In federal court, judges can grant injunctions to stop infringing activity in all intellectual property cases This can occur either at the beginning of litigation or as a remedy in the final judgement.
If creative work is registered, a copyright holder may be entitled to statutory damages of anywhere between $200 to $100,000 from the defendant. This means the plaintiff will not have to prove actual damages.
In other IP cases, the plaintiff and their lawyer will have to prove damages. For trademark infringement, this can include evidence of the following:
For patent infringement, the plaintiff can ask for either lost profits or reasonable royalties. Lost profits are more cumbersome to prove but may generate a higher dollar amount in damages. Our Alpharetta lawyers can help determine what is most beneficial in a specific IP infringement case.
Once you have worked hard to bring your idea to life, it is important to protect it under intellectual property laws. These laws should prevent your invention or creative work from being copied by a third party, but if infringement does occur, you should consult a knowledgeable attorney to help rectify the situation.
At Sparks Law, an Alpharetta IP infringement lawyer could assess your patent, trademark, or copyright claims to identify the appropriate course of action. We can help you seek an injunction and potential damages for the harm that has been done to you. Call today for your initial consultation.