Copyright Law in Mississippi

The intellectual property of creatives in Mississippi can represent the completion of years of hard work and sacrifice. However, you may encounter someone infringing upon your rights. You could also be accused of infringing upon the rights of another. In these cases you may want to seek out the experience of a copyright attorney in Mississippi.

What Is Copyright Registration?

Copyright registration offers the author of a piece of work in Mississippi some protection from those who attempt 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. Technically, a piece of work doesn’t require copyright registration for protection under the US copyright law. However, you should register your product in Mississippi with the help of a copyright lawyer. This can offer you several unique advantages. By doing this you can:

  • Protect 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 is 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 business people and brand owners often trademark:

  • Logos
  • Symbols
  • Product packages
  • Name of the business
  • Name of the product or service
  • Designs

Online Forms are provided by the State Government of Mississippi to aid those wishing to file an application for trademark in the state. The forms must be completed in good faith, signed by the applicant, and accompanied by a non-refundable, $50 filing fee.

The Secretary of State of Mississippi declares that no Mississippi resident filing for a trademark needs prior experience or approval from the USPTO to apply for a trademark in the state. In fact, the International Trademarks Association has publicly recognized Mississippi as having some of the most progressive trademark laws in the nation. These laws allow businesses to easily enforce their trademark laws, as well as provide assistance in proving claims of trademark dilution.

How Long Does It Take to Register a Trademark and Copyright?

While the USPTO affirms that your application could take up to 18 months to receive approval, the State of Mississippi reiterates that once you have received this approval your trademark is protected and valid for 5 years. Generally, you will be allowed to renew this trademark beginning around 6 months before the date of its expiration. The filing fee to renew your trademark is $50 for residents of Mississippi, and $60 for non-residents.

This area of the law can be quite complicated, and it is easy to make mistakes when filing by yourself. However these mistakes can cost you time, money, and could potentially allow another individual the opportunity to file an application for a similar trademark. To prevent such a predicament, you may want to seek the counsel of an experienced Mississippi copyright attorney.

What’s the Difference Between a Trademark and a Copyright?

The value of your Mississippi 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. Because of this, if people use those assets without your permission, you can and should file a lawsuit against them for infringement under copyright law.

While trademarks and copyrights protect intellectual property, they cover two different aspects. Copyright registration protects artistic and literary works, such as videos and books. On the other hand, a trademark registration protects brand components. This could 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 of the magazines that you have published.

Work With an Experienced Mississippi 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.

Mississippi copyright lawyers 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 help determine the value of the intellectual property that you own.

An intellectual property lawyer also assesses the quality of the assets. They will look at the number of assets licensed under your name or your business in Mississippi. 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 Mississippi copyright attorneys that can guide you through every step? We can even help you connect with an attorney across Mississippi 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!

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