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Our services

Industrial property rights

  • Patent
  • Design
  • Trademark
  • License and contract law
  • Employee inventor rights

Preparation/research

  • Patent search
  • Name search
  • Similarity search
  • FTO search

Enforcement of your right

  • Legal representation in patent, trademark and design infringement proceedings
  • Legal representation in infringement proceedings
  • Legal representation in appeal, opposition and nullity proceedings
  • Preparation of industrial property right infringement expert opinions by patent attorneys

The most important industrial property rights

Patent and utility model

The patent is deemed the most important technical property right. Due to the elaborate and detailed examination procedure, the granted patent as monopoly right is of very high importance in the industry. It serves to secure the market position and the proprietary know-how of companies. In addition, the term “patented” is an indication for the high quality of your invention.

The most important prerequisites for patentability of an invention are as follows:

  • Novelty
  • Inventive step
  • Industrial applicability

After a patent is granted, the industrial property right is valid for a maximum of 20 years from the date of filing.

The subject matter of a planned patent application must be novel and must have not been made accessible to the public prior to the date of filing. Otherwise, the invention is rejected as not novel. Thus, every inventor all over the world must remain silent about his or her invention.
Besides the German patent whose protection is given for Germany, there is also a European patent. For globally operating companies, there is also the option to apply for international protection in additional countries with just one so-called PCT application. This simplifies the worldwide application procedure.

Besides the patent, there is also the option of registering a technical invention as a utility model. This “small patent” is a so-called unexamined industrial property right which is often granted quickly. Such a utility model is for example relevant for smaller inventions or simple developments.

Trademark

Trademarks serve to designate goods and services of a company so that these can be distinguished from similar goods and services of other companies.

The trademark is the fingerprint of your company!

It serves as a sign of quality, advertising medium or also as an indicator of origin of your goods and services. Trademarks are versatile and can be registered as word components, image elements, three-dimensional images or as colors. The duration of protection is 10 years initially and can be renewed any number of times afterwards.

Design

A design serves to protect two-dimensional objects such as wallpapers or fabrics, and three-dimensional objects such as furniture, accessories or cars.

If an invention is missing the technicality required for the patent, there is the possibility to protect the design of the product or a part of the product. Thus, the design is to be seen as the completion of technical industrial property rights. With the registration, the owner has the sole right of use and may prohibit third parties from such use.

The design has a maximum protection period of 25 years.

There is an official examination. The substantive protection requirements needed for any design (novelty and individuality) are usually only examined in the event of a dispute. This design protection can be requested in Germany, the European Union as well as internationally. A worldwide network of cooperation partners allows for flexible application preparation as well as the timely submission of the application documents with the respective national authorities.

Thanks to our expertise, we are at your side from the initial consultation all the way through to legal representation in case of infringement proceedings.