Patents are necessary to protect your intellectual property. What happens when your rights are infringed upon?
Patent litigation might be called into play. An alternative dispute resolution is a useful legal resource you can tap into when multiple parties are attempting to lay claim to the same creation, particularly if you’re new to the world of licensing and copyright. When emotions run high and there are many rules and regulations to follow, even ones that seem conflicting, an extra pair of eyes can make all the difference. It takes a level head and an experienced resume to make sense of these situations, that of which a patent lawyer is more than prepared to handle.
Here’s what you should know about copyright and patent law.
An arbitration service is called into play for many reasons. Businesses large and small rely on the aid of lawyers to assist with commercial cases, corporate and securities law, corporate compliance, bankruptcy mediation and simple consultation. Contrary to popular belief, most federal civil cases don’t actually go to trial. Even back in 1960, when this number was higher, the biggest spike in courtroom hearings was still 12%. Today experts have estimated just 1% of all civil cases reaching trial in federal courts.
This should tell you something about your chances of seeing a courtroom should you find yourself in need of patent litigation. The most complex cases, usually involving the most money or the most people, will need additional hearings to reach a conclusion. With the exception of extent modified by parties, class actions are handled by either arbitrators or panels. Most cases today, however, will usually be resolved behind-the-scenes. The benefits of litigating can sometimes outweigh the benefits of mediation.
Bankruptcy is an issue you can face if you’re not serious about patent litigation. Nearly 90% of all Chapter 11 debtors have less than $10 million in assets or liabilities as well as less than $10 million in yearly revenues. Although business bankruptcies show a similar percentage to the amount of class action lawsuits brought to courtrooms, that’s no reason to become compliant when your rights are in limbo. A commercial contract is binding, provided it’s executed properly, and the aid of a lawyer can ensure that it’s meted out to the fullest of its ability.
Copyright and patent law has undergone a few changes over the years. Like any patent you have an expiration date depending on when you filed and the type you filed for. Utility patents will hold strong for 20 years, provided they were filed after June 8th of 1995. Some patents, however, need to be actively maintained over the years to qualify. These can accrue fees, some of which surprise businesses that are unfamiliar with the process. When someone attempts to lay claim to your intellectual property? This can become even messier than you realize.
Additional rules you should know about patents include how copyright law works internationally, additional expiration dates that may qualify and the legal consequence of having said work infringed upon. Whether you’re a construction site facing a contract dispute over overtime pay or a new business owner worried about how far your patent can reach years later, an arbitration service is the first resource you should tap into. Intellectual property law is only going to be more vital from here in the digital age and you’ll need all the help you can get to succeed.
Reach out to your local law firm and ask them about patent litigation today.