- Trade marks
- Plant breeder's rights
- Understanding IP
- IP infringement
Intellectual property (IP) is the property of your mind or proprietary knowledge. It is a productive new idea you create. This can be an invention, trade mark, design, brand or even the application of your idea.
Your idea must be something new or original, but determining whether your idea is new or not is not always easy.
Applying for an IP right to protect your idea can be critical if you want to build a business and establish your presence in a market.
As stated by Craig Venter, a geneticist and one of the first scientists to sequence the human genome, 'intellectual property is a key aspect for economic development.'
Beware of publicity in the early days
If you are thinking that a patent or a design right might be what you need, be aware of publicity.
In today’s digital world, it is important to not publish your patent or design until your ownership has been confirmed. This means not tweeting about it, not putting it on Facebook and not writing about it in trade journals. In short, keep your idea out of the public domain.
Publishing your idea in any form may jeopardise your ability to claim a patent or design right before you even apply.
Different IP rights
Some forms of IP require formal application and examination before you can claim a right to ownership. Others do not.
There are some rights that we don't administer. Copyright and circuit layout rights are administered by the Department of Communications and the Arts. Business names, company names and domain names are not types of IP.
We administer patents, trade marks, designs and plant breeder’s rights in Australia.
Before you apply for any IP rights, it is important to understand the differences between the four main rights and which one suits your idea.
You can use our website to help you develop a strategy for your IP or employ an attorney or qualified person. Ultimately though, you are the keeper of your IP.
Trade mark basics
Find out what a trade mark is and learn about the differences between a trade mark and a design right, business name or domain name.
Types of trade marks
A trade mark is not limited to being a corporate logo. It could also be a jingle, your business name painted on the side of your truck or even a scent.
Benefits of a trade mark
A trade mark can be your most valuable marketing tool. It is your business identity that helps you promote your products or services.
The examination process is where we check your application to make sure it contains all the correct information and meets legislative requirements.
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