Copyright Law in Norfolk, VA

The City of Norfolk has several incentives to offer developing businesses in the area. Local entrepreneurs can take advantage of tax abatement, grants, and other programs.

But, there are many characteristics of business operations where you become left to your own devices. Trademarks, copyrights, and enforcing them as exclusive intellectual property are noteworthy examples. If you need help with this pivotal aspect of your operations, you will need the information we have below.

What Is Copyright Registration?

Copyright registration offers the author of a piece of work in Norfolk, Virginia 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 Norfolk, VA 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 Norfolk, VA business people and brand owners often trademark:

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

The State Corporation Commission processes applications for trademark registration from Norfolk. There are several requirements that an applicant must meet to receive approval. For example, there is a fee for each class. Moreover, you will need to supply:

  • One specimen of the use of the mark in business operations in Virginia
  • A classification as defined by current law
  • An exhibit of the display of the trademark
  • Any other details required by the state government

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

Most applications for a trademark sent to the USPTO from Norfolk will take more than a year to process. More specifically, the average wait time for the issuance of a mark is 13.3 months.

Making your way through the application process without delays is a monumental challenge. For example, there are nuances to working with the TEAS system that can require expertise. Some examples of frequent problems to avoid are:

  • Using the International Class when you can’t find the correct identification in the ID Manual
  • Replying to office actions with the dedicated field provided in TEAS
  • Contacting your examining attorney via phone or email instead of formal communication channels
  • Answering last-minute to deadlines

The U.S. Copyright Office has just as many errors to avoid while working with its specialists. Thankfully, they have a faster processing time of three months or so.

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

The value of your Norfolk, VA 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. 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 Norfolk, Virginia 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 Norfolk, VA 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 Norfolk, VA. 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 Norfolk copyright attorneys that can guide you through every step? We can even help you connect with an attorney across Virginia 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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