Copyright Law in Fort Myers, FL
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There are considerable resources available to business owners in Fort Myers. Unfortunately, they’re mostly on their own regarding intellectual property. Applications, maintenance, and civil actions are up to entrepreneurs to initiate. If you have questions about the process, you will find the essentials and more in this article.
What Is Copyright Registration?
Copyright registration offers the author of a piece of work in Fort Myers, Florida some protection from those who try to steal their idea.
A novel creation receives copyright protection when it becomes fixed into a tangible form. Copyright law dictates how to establish this ownership. Additionally, it explains how to register intellectual property or defend against infringement.
Copyright registration is a type of public record for ownership. A piece of work doesn’t require copyright registration for protection under the US copyright law. However, you should register your product in Fort Myers, FL with the help of a copyright lawyer, as this can offer you several unique advantages:
- Protects your work against the importation of copies that infringe the registration. Your registration will be recorded with the United States Customs and Border Protection.
- If your work is already registered in the United States, you can proceed with an infringement lawsuit; otherwise, you will have to register it first.
- The IP owner can seek damages and attorney fees if a copyright registration happens within three months of publication (or prior to an infringement claim).
- If a copyrighted work becomes registered outside of the three-month time frame, you may seek actual damages that you lost.
- Copyright registration will identify each public record of its existence. This action puts the copyright protection into public notice for the piece of work that you’ve created and/or own.
What Is a Trademark?
A trademark is a word, symbol, design, or phrase that distinguishes you from another company. Service marks are a type of trademark that a company will use when providing services to the public. Technically, trademarks are a form of intellectual property. It also forms part of the company’s brand, even if they no longer use it.
Here are some of the components that established Fort Myers, FL business people and brand owners often trademark:
- Product packages
- Name of the business
- Name of the product or service
The Division of Corporations handles trademark applications that go to the Florida Department of State. Business owners from Fort Myers need to submit an application and pay $87.50 for each applicable class. The same cost applies when you renew up to five years later.
How Long Does It Take to Register a Trademark and Copyright?
Trademark applicants will experience varying degrees of delays based on a few critical elements. First, the current processing times for each stage fluctuate based on the volume of applications. Even more critical are the ways someone with expertise can help you avoid unnecessary delays. Limiting the wait can often involve:
- Use the dedicated TEAS forms for resolutions or alternative arguments
- Ask the examining attorney to issue amendments through informal communications
- Submitting a mark that has legal conflicts
- Identifying the goods and services incorrectly
An online application to the U.S. Copyright Office has the fastest processing times by far. Claims from Fort Myers without any necessary correspondence can resolve in only one month. But, the average from October 2021 to March 2022 was 3.6 months.
What’s the Difference Between a Trademark and a Copyright?
The value of your Fort Myers, FL business depends on the assets it owns. It’s important to note that the most valuable assets are not always physical or financial. Your intellectual property counts as assets too. Due to this, if people use those assets without your permission, you can file a lawsuit for infringement.
While trademarks and copyrights protect intellectual property, they cover two different aspects. Copyright registration protects artistic and literary works, such as videos and books. A trademark registration protects brand components. This can be a jingle, a logo, or a mascot of your organization.
Take, for example, if you own a magazine publishing company. You would trademark the logo and the name of your company. However, you would also place copyright protection on all the magazines that you have published.
Work With an Experienced Fort Myers, Florida Copyright Lawyer
Do you have an idea that needs protection under intellectual property law? If so, complete the registration process as soon as possible. There is always the risk that someone else might beat you to it. This eventuality can create complications when the time comes to defend IP rights claims.
An experienced Fort Myers, FL copyright lawyer can help you uncover if anyone else has registered a similar idea. If your concept closely resembles another, it might get rejected. Consequently, it is better to find this early than to go through the process only to get denied later. In addition, an intellectual property lawyer will help you to draft critical documents. Or, they can determine the value of the intellectual property that you own.
An intellectual property lawyer also assesses the quality of the assets. They will also look at the number of assets licensed under your name or your business in Fort Myers, FL. This evaluation can help to maximize the entire value of all intangible assets that your company has.
Are you ready to tap into our network of Fort Myers copyright attorneys that can guide you through every step? We can even help you connect with an attorney across Florida state lines.
Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an experienced lawyer in your area!