Owning a successful business comes with continuous learning, research and innovation.
Intellectual Property (‘IP’) is classified by the World Intellectual Property Organisation as creations of the mind and consists of products, services, processes or ideas which are new and original.
To assist your business, IP covers a wide range of business assets, enabling you to own the work you create, such as logos, software and creative work.
In Australia, IP is managed by a Government Agency, Intellectual Property Australia (‘IP Australia’) which administers IP rights and legislation for various forms of IP – outlined below.
What are the types of IP Rights?
- Patents – protects inventions and processes;
- Copyright – protects arts and computer programs;
- Trademarks – protects logos and branding;
- Registered Designs – protects visual attributes of products;
- Circuit Layout Rights – protects layout designs or plans utilised in computer-generated designs; and
- Plant Breeders Rights – protects commercialisation rights of new plant varieties.
How do I identify what sort of IP I have?
IP is a critical asset in business. Identifying your assets such as business name, branding and goods/services on offer are useful in protecting your IP rights. Key things to consider are:
- Goods or services on offer;
- Legal rights to those goods or services; and
- Any market advantages your rights may offer you.
If considering a patent or design right, it is recommended by IP Australia to not publicise your patent or design until ownership has been confirmed.
Protecting your IP:
IP Protection is critical in establishing presence in a chosen market and is pertinent to creating a successful business.
Prior to claiming ownership, some forms of IP rights require formal application. For example, Copyright rights are separate from IP and do not require registration. Whilst Circuit Layout Rights are administered by the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications.
IP Australia administers patents, trademarks, designs and plant breeders’ rights. Prior to application with any governing body, it is fundamental to understand the assets your business has and what form of registration best suits your idea and requirements.
Arro strongly advises new and established business owners to review their assets to ensure their IP rights are appropriately protected. Should you require any further advice, Arro is available to assist you. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us!