Protecting intellectual property is an important priority for many California businesses. Securing ownership of innovative and creative ideas can be the determining factor in whether your business moves from start-up to successful entity.
Protecting intellectual property with a trademark is an important step in securing ownership and exclusive use of unique creations like brand names and logos. However, simply getting the trademark does not mean that the goods or services in question have indefinite protection. In fact, other parties can lawfully use the protected name or creation if the trademark holder does not meet use requirements.
Securing a patent, trademark or copyright can be critical to all businesses with unique, innovative goods and services. And protecting trade secrets with confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements can also be vital to protecting information that gives a company its competitive edge.
Employers have numerous tools at their disposal to protect their business and the elements that make it competitive. One such tool is a non-disclosure agreement, or NDA.
As a business owner, you likely go to great lengths to avoid legal disputes and follow state and federal laws. You may have employment or independent contractor agreements with your workers, and partnership or joint venture agreements with your partners; if there are regulations with which you must comply, you might diligently review them and make any changes necessary to avoid fines and penalties.
In previous posts, we have talked about the various tools business owners can utilize to protect their intellectual property: non-disclosure agreements, patents and copyrights among them.
Can you imagine if every soda company on the planet had access to Coca-Cola's recipe? Or if every fast food chain knew the secret spices that went into Kentucky Fried Chicken's meals? If either of those things were true, then every soda company would make Coca-Cola and every fast food restaurant would make KFC chicken. The secrets that these companies have are valuable because of the secrecy behind their products. If their trade secrets were public knowledge, there would be no reason not to copy them.
Californians are no strangers to wine. Whether you drink it or not, you know wine is a massive industry that continues to grow. This growth may satiate wine lovers across the U.S. who thirst for more options, but it creates a problem for wineries who are finding it tougher and tougher to distinguish themselves in the marketplace.