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What's Considered Intellectual Property In Laguna Beach, California?

Updated: Sep 22

A Quick Guide To Intellectual Property In California Law


Trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets, and other confidential information are examples of intellectual property. Infringement occurs when a corporation uses your intellectual property without your permission.


So, what constitutes intellectual property? Here's a quick guide on California IP laws, as often handled by our prescreened Laguna Beach Intellectual Property Lawyers In California.


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What Is Protected by Intellectual Property Law?


As defined by the American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA), intellectual property (IP) includes patents, copyrights, and trademarks. It can also cover trade secrets, which are described as information (which could consist of a formula, device, method, pattern, technique, procedure, or others) that:

  • Has actual or potential value

  • Is subject to reasonable attempts to keep the information private

If you're confused on whether your case fits into an intellectual property claim, consult with a prescreened Laguna Beach Business Law Attorney to help you sort things out.


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What Is Considered Intellectual Property?


The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) defines the following intellectual property categories:

1. Copyright


A physical medium is required for a copyrighted work to exist. For example, a writer can copyright a book as long as it has been printed in its final form, whether electronically or physically. Other works of art can also be protected by copyrights.

The United States Copyright Office allows creators to register their copyrights. While this step isn't necessary to safeguard intellectual property, it can provide creators more leverage in defending their work's rights.


2. Patent


There are three sorts of patents, according to the USPTO:

  • Design patents protect a product's physical appearance (i.e., design, shape, or patterns)

  • Utility patents protect a product's usefulness or functionality (i.e., the technology used in cars, vacuums, dishwashers, etc.)

  • Plant patents protect plants that have been discovered or reproduced asexually.

3. Trademark


According to the USPTO, a trademark might be a word, phrase, design, or symbol that represents products or services. After a company's logo, tagline, or symbol, trademark symbols may appear.

Patents and trademarks must be filed and registered with the USPTO. Otherwise, authors will have a hard time asserting their rights in a legal setting.

The United States Patent and Trademark Office investigates patents and trademarks to see if someone else has already registered anything identical. If the patent or trademark is not sufficiently unique, the USPTO may decline the application.


4. Rights of Publicity

The likeness of public personalities such as athletes and entertainers has monetary worth. For endorsement deals and print ads, actors are paid far into the eight figures.


Theft of celebrity likeness to boost online sales has increased dramatically in the internet age. As a result, many states, including California, allow celebrities to file statutory claims.


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Proving Intellectual Property Theft

If you suspect your intellectual property rights have been violated, you should immediately consult a Laguna Beach Business Lawyer who can help you assert your rights and recuperate any lost income or business possibilities.


Whether or not intellectual property theft has occurred is determined by the type of IP law that has been broken:

  • Evidence that another entity is using a trademark that is very similar to or identical to yours, as well as proof that you owned the IP rights prior to the opposing parties.

  • Prove that the work being reproduced, displayed, or distributed was derived from your solely owned copyrighted work and that you, the IP owner, did not give permission for its use.

  • How about outright theft? In this scenario, it is critical to proving that you were the first to file for the patent and hence have exclusive rights to distribute or sell it.

  • If a nondisclosure agreement has been signed, you have the authority to give legal reasons that preclude another party from utilizing, benefitting from, or exposing secretive IP information if you own it.


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