Copyright Law in Rapid City, SD

Unfortunately there are bad faith actors in Rapid City. These bad faith actors take every opportunity to increase their own financial standings. Even if that means infringing upon your trademarked intellectual property. The best way to combat such bad faith actors is to trademark your property. When filing for a trademark, it may be in your best interest to have an experienced copyright attorney in Rapid City by your side.

What Is Copyright Registration?

Copyright registration offers the author of a piece of work in Rapid City, South Dakota 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 Rapid City, SD 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 Rapid City, SD business people and brand owners often trademark:

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

The South Dakota Secretary of State affirms that this office is the filing agent for trademarks, service marks, emblems, and even farm and ranch name designations in the state. When filing your application you’ll have to include the name of the registrant, along with detailed drawings and descriptions of the mark. In addition, you’ll need to submit examples of the mark in use along with your business.

The SOS Office also provides various online applications. These applications are for new trademarks, renewing existing trademarks, and transferring ownership of an existing trademark.

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

While this process can be time consuming, often taking as long as 18 months to receive approval or your trademark, the benefits far outweigh the costs. Once you establish your rights with a trademark, South Dakota State University states that your trademark lasts for 10 years. You can begin the renewal process for the mark as early as 6 months before the protection expires.

Establishing your rights concerning your creative property allows you both protection and control. If this is the path you are seeking, you may want to seek the counsel of an experienced copyright attorney in Rapid City. This is a very nuanced area of the law, but an experienced attorney can help you navigate it.

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

The value of your Rapid City, SD 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 Rapid City, South Dakota 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 Rapid City, SD 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 Rapid City, SD. 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 Rapid City copyright attorneys  that can guide you through every step? We can even help you connect with an attorney across South Dakota 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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