Intellectual Property audit. Zachary Hiller Patent Attorney Houston, TX

Ready or not, 2016 is upon us. The New Year brings with it new to-do lists for your business to ensure continued success in the year to come. There will be new challenges and new opportunities on every level. Now is the time that many create resolutions to start good habits and abandon bad ones. Have you made any resolutions? I’m not talking about losing a few pounds or eating healthier. Have you made any resolutions for your professional development? Does your company have any bad habits that it needs to kick? Do you even know where to start? Perhaps now is the time for an intellectual property audit to determine what your company needs to protect in 2016.

Why Do I Need An Intellectual Property Audit?

Intellectual Property audit Law Offices of Zachary Hiller Houston, TX

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Intellectual property (IP) is a term that covers a great deal of potential assets for a company. It is the umbrella term under which important items like a logo or slogan can fall under. There are several types of IP, but some of the basics include:

  • Patents: These can include unique inventions or processes  that are intrinsic to the manufacture of your product. Design patents can cover specific ornamental pieces, exclusive to your brand on an otherwise functional product.
  • Trademark: Your company name, logo and slogans can all fall under this category of IP. These are the distinct identifiers of your brand in the marketplace.
  • Copyright: Marketing materials, software, product guides and manuals, web designs and artwork or any other unique work of authorship may be eligible for protection under copyright laws.
  • Trade Secrets: Customer lists, secret recipes or processes, unique techniques and any other company secrets that are valuable to the company because they are not generally known to the public. These are the tidbits of information that separate you from your competitors and can be very valuable.

All of these intellectual property types carry an intrinsic value to your company. They shape everything from the way you do business to the way people perceive you in the marketplace. These are items that are woven into the core being of your business. Do you know how to protect them?

This is the value of an intellectual property audit. Not only can an IP audit identify any potential assets for the company, but they can also ascertain any risks or opportunities associated with these assets. In short, an IP audit will help a company understand what IP assets exist and whether they are being used to their full potential. To offer some perspective, in a previous post we looked at the value of some IP assets; logos in this case. These assets can be valued in the millions of dollars for larger corporations. For smaller companies, the value can be just as priceless in the form of consumer brand recognition and goodwill. Who can put a price on that?

Additionally, an IP audit can help identify any misuse of assets. There have been countless cases of smaller companies going toe to toe with larger corporations who felt their intellectual property rights were being infringed. These suits can be very costly for a small business who, even inadvertently, infringed on another’s IP assets. An intellectual property audit can help spot these issues before they become costly suits.

Are you unsure of your company’s IP assets? Zachary Hiller Law can review your companies IP portfolio and provide a sound plan for protecting your intellectual property assets. Start your year off right. Call Zachary Hiller Law today.

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