Intellectual Property Law – What you should know

Intellectual Property Law deals with areas of one’s intelligence. This area of law protects creative works, artistic works, inventions, etc. Intellectual property law deals more with the intangible works or property of a person.

Intellectual Property Law – What you should know

Under Intellectual Property Law, a person gets a unique form of protection for the ownership of his literal works, discoveries, and inventions; words, phrases, music, videos and design; formula or even used to get a result.

This area of law also concerns one’s legal rights concerning his creative effort or commercial reputation and goodwill. One can transfer or sale or bequest his Intellectual Property.

However, Intellectual property infringement arises when a person infringes or illegally use the intellectual property of someone without their permission. Such intellectual property infringement gives the right to legal actions.

However, Intellectual Property can be limited in its nature. It is subject to some restrictions as to forms and life-span in some situations. In some cases, you need to do the registration for such inventions. In most jurisdiction, you have to do copyright registration.

The biggest body and agency protecting the intellectual property in the world is the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).  This body is also an agency of the United Nations. This body was created via a treaty in 1967.

Intellectual property rights

Intellectual Property rights are the right of enjoyment and protection of one’s Intellectual property and the right to sufficient compensation when such rights are infringed by another.

Intellectual Property rights under the Intellectual Property law is divided into two; Moral and Economic right.

  • Moral right: Moral right deals with the author’s paternity of his intellectual creation. It protects the personal and reputational value of his work. This is as opposed to the plain monetary value of a work. Intellectual property law as regards moral rights of intellectual property is what gives the author the right to decide if he wants to disclose his work to the public. Here, the author can set the condition for commercial exploitation and defend the integrity of his work. The Intellectual property right of an author under his moral right deals with the moral standing of the creator’s creation as it relates to his work.
  • Economic right: Intellectual property rights comes with the right to financial gains from the creation of a work. This relates to the author’s commercial, financial value and grants the author should enjoy from his creation. Here the author enjoys a monopoly to exclusively exploit his creation for a certain period. This benefits and fosters industrial and commercial relations as well as creativity. Under such monopolistic benefit, the holders can prevent third parties from using, tempering, manufacturing and selling the creation without authorization. Whenever there is an infringement of such rights, the author can take legal action against unlawful use of his literary works, artistic or industrial creations.


 Intellectual Property law – the nature thereof

The very nature of Intellectual property is monopolistic and territorial.

Intellectual property law is monopolistic as it tends to guard the monopolistic ideas of a person’s creation. However, today, there is so many legislation that tries to balance such monopolistic tendency of such creation and enjoyment so as not to give a person undue advantage and avoid discouraging others from creating something similar but different.

Intellectual property law usually has a territorial nature. That is, it is subject to registration of such intellectual property in a particular region or state. That is, the state such intellectual property is registered. Hence, its registration in one country doesn’t usually affect another country. For example, an intellectual property registered in the United States usually won’t affect another country.

Types of intellectual property

We have 4 types of Intellectual property, there are:

  1. Trade Secrets: This protects Information of manufacturers and inventors. This protects the secret formula or method used to produce a product. Its infringement is usually based on inappropriate use. Registration of a trade secret is not done. It lifespan are usually long and can be successive in nature. Not usually limited to time and space. For example, the procedure used to make Coca-Cola, is a trade secret and workers are not permitted to disclose such trade secret.
  2. Trademarks: This protects brands. Registration of trademarks is not compulsory but it is advisable for people to register their trademark. The registration is made optional in various countries or region. It protects people in the commercial industry. Registration of trademarks is usually not too expensive. Trademarks include colours, logo, style, pattern, etc., a company uses for marketing its products. Trademarks usually have an indefinite long-term guard against infringement by another.
  1. Copyrights:  This protects the works of authors. There are usually literary works, video production, etc. Copyright protects against the copying of an author’s work and also prevent others from enjoying the intellectual property and benefit meant to be enjoyed by the author. Copyright must not be registered. However, even though is optional to register,  it is advisable to register one’s work with the Copyrights Commission/Agency in one’s jurisdiction.
  1. Patents: This protects the utility patent and design patent. It protects infringement with an ornamental and functional aspect. Its registration is usually compulsory. Its infringement includes making use, sale, offer or import, etc. Its protection lasts 15- 20 years in some circumstances and depending on the type.


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