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Do you really need a trademark or copyright?

| Jun 26, 2020 | intellectual property

Many California companies apply for copyrights or trademarks as part of their business branding strategy. Doing so can help establish the company’s name and reputation in the marketplace. You can register a copyright or trademark to protect your creative works and to minimize the chances of someone unlawfully representing your organization.

There are numerous things that trademarks protect. It safeguards your name, color design patterns, symbols, words and sounds that you may use to distinguish the goods and services that you offer. A trademark can last indefinitely as long as you use it in commerce and defend it against violators.

Trademarks generally cost between $275 to $325 to register, plus attorney fees. The registration of a trademark gives you more extensive protection, especially if you are operating in broader geographic areas or online. Trademarks only protect you in the country in which you register it, not overseas.

Copyright protections aim to safeguard original works of authorship from piracy. Your business may have specific artwork, writings, pictures, computer software or website designs unique to your company. Copyrights prevent others from commandeering your original works and using them as their own.

The average cost to register a copyright is approximately $35, and it lasts for 70 years after the author’s death. For small businesses, copyrights last for 95 from the date of first publication, or 120 years from the date the creation date, whichever expires first.

If you have an Orange County business or original works of authorship that you need to protect, then you may benefit from copyrighting or trademarking it to safeguard your interests. An experienced intellectual property attorney can help you prepare your registration application to shield your work from those who would infringe upon it.