While many business owners and creators are lucky enough to never have to deal with intellectual property theft, it’s an unfortunate fact that many others will. The internet plays a huge role in this type of theft, known as infringement, with as much as 25% of internet traffic used to consume this stolen content. Add in that artists, songwriters, and small businesses all display their creations on the web, and it’s the perfect storm for the theft of their ideas. In the event that this happens to you, you will likely have to meet with an attorney to discuss how you can be compensated and stop your competitors from using your intellectual property.
An infringement suit is tough to deal with, but with the right attorney by your side, you’ll have a better chance at success. Here are some of the strategies for intellectual property cases that you and your attorney might look to in order to defend your case:
1. Get your intellectual property protected. If possible, it is best to seek protection for your intellectual property before someone else would be able to infringe on it. While copyright is automatically granted for written and artistic works, it can still be useful to meet with an intellectual property rights lawyer to discuss how you can protect the work if you intend to publish it. Making sure that you go through all of the copyright, trademark, or patent process steps for your creation is one of the best strategies for intellectual property cases because it makes your work easier to defend.
2. Figure out who is to blame. Whether your work was protected or not, there will, of course, be another party in your infringement case. In some cases, it’s a rival company — perhaps they’ve copied your logo or used your brand name without permission. However, insider theft is often to blame, with former employees and trusted business partners making up a significant portion of such infringement. The important thing to know is who has stolen your work, so an attorney can find a way to contact their lawyers.
3. Gather evidence. Proving that your intellectual property has been copied or infringed can be difficult in some cases, especially if both parties have created remarkably similar products. An attorney will have to prove that your creation has been copied in some way, so it will be important to work with a lawyer who understands the type of intellectual property you’ve created. In other words, if you have created a new species of plant, you would want a lawyer who understands plant patents.
Have more questions about strategies for intellectual property cases that you have to take to court? Get in touch with an attorney and leave a comment below.