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Orange County Legal Blog

The 4 types of patent infringement

California businesses spend millions of dollars completing the research and development required to create something new and obtain a patent on the intellectual property.

Once a company has incurred the risk of obtaining such a patent, and is now making money from it, to have the intellectual property stolen or infringed upon can represent serious financial losses.

Kim Kardashian's company sued over alleged patent violations

A company owned by Kim Kardashian, Kimsaprincess Inc., is facing a patent infringement lawsuit. According to the complaint, a man filed to patent an "integrated lighting accessory" to be incorporated with a mobile phone case. Later, the man licensed his light-up phone case invention to Snaplight.

The lawsuit alleges that the invention has suffered financially due to Kim Kardashian's promotion of the LuMee light-up phone case on her social media accounts. Also named in the lawsuit as a defendant is Urban Outfitters, which sells the LuMee. The lawsuit, filed by Snaplight, is asking for $100 million in compensation for patent infringement violations.

Protect your work and do a patent search

You have done a lot of brainstorming and tinkering with your invention. Now you want to protect your work and ideas. If you are considering applying for a patent, then you will want to get started off right. As you plunge into the patent process, you may want to do a patent search. A patent search will allow you to see previously issued patents, as well as published applications.

There are four types of patent searches you should be aware of:

Patent law: What does it mean for your idea to be useful?

In patent law, your idea must be useful, novel and non-obvious in order for you to receive a patent. In this article, we will discuss specifically what it means for a patent to be "useful."

In the context of patent law, "useful" means that your subject to be patented needs to have a purpose that's useful. It also refers to the item being operable and in working condition. It's not enough, for example, to have an idea for an invention, but the actual item does not work for its intended purpose; this would, in effect, make it "unuseful."

Intellectual property goes far beyond trademarks

Trademarks are often at the center of intellectual property disputes, but don't make the mistake of assuming the law doesn't offer even more protections. Intellectual property is defined fairly widely and can encompass many things that could be critical for your business.

For example, your intellectual property could be an artistic work you've created, whether that's a literary work, a piece of art, or even a performance. This protects people like singers and comedians, for instance, who create art in a very different way than writers and painters.

When you are accused of infringement

It is a jarring feeling to be accused of stealing someone else's ideas. But it happens more and more often today, as businesses circle their wagons to defend their intellectual property.

We see it happening in virtually every business. It occurs very visibly in entertainment and publishing, but it also happens to writers, manufacturers, designers, software companies - even chefs who seek to protect their latest concoction.

3 reasons why a federally registered trademark is useful

Technically speaking, you may not have to register your trademark federally. However, there are some big upsides to doing so. Make sure you carefully consider all of them before making your decision.

To get you started, here are three of those advantages:

How do courts determine if logos are too close?

You started a business a decade ago, and you created a logo with the help of a local graphic designer. A month ago, you noticed another business that is using a logo that's very close to yours.

Do you have a case? How does the court decide if a logo is so close that it infringes on your trademark? After all, it's not as if they stole your logo directly. There are differences.

What are the 3 different types of patents?

Many people may not realize the importance to getting a patent when it comes to protecting their intellectual property. Without a patent, you may find that you lost out on your invention to someone else.

There are three types of patents, with each serving a specific purpose. These patents include:

Copyright categories offer broad definitions

If you're wondering what types of things can be protected by copyrights, you should know that the categories are fairly broad in some cases. The goal, overall, is to protect all original works that have been recorded in some fashion.

These recordings do need to be "fixed." This simply means the recording has to be tangible in some way.

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