Patent law is the branch of intellectual property law that deals with new inventions.
Traditional patents protect tangible scientific inventions, such as circuit boards, car engines, heating coils or zippers. However, over time patents have been used to protect a broader variety of inventions such as coding algorithms, business practices, or genetically modified organisms.
In fact, Intellectual property (IP) and technology law has become one of the most dynamic areas of patent law. The reach of internet-based businesses into every realm of professional and personal activity has given rise to debate over whether Big Tech firms engage in unfair competition and monopolistic behavior
As commerce, art, finance and business startups flourish in the digital space, there are lot of legal questions that need answers, such as how do antitrust provisions and intellectual property protections such as copyrights, trademarks, and patents uphold the rights of authors, scientists, entrepreneurs and other creators?
Consequently, globalization and increased access to the internet have pushed information technology and intellectual property related matters to the forefront of commercial activity and corporate decision-making.
Exactly what is eligible for patent protection is a topic of fierce debate and courts often struggle to determine what is a new, nonobvious invention.
Once granted, a patent gives the inventors the exclusive right to sell their invention for 20 years. Sometimes inventors give other companies a license to manufacture and sell the invention in exchange for a fee.
The three types of patents are:
- Utility patents –Patents that are issued for inventions that are novel and useful
- Design patents –Patents that protect the design or image of a product
- Plant patents — Plant patents are issued to applicants for plants that can reproduce
Want to learn more? Tonex offers Patent Law for Managers Training Crash Course, a 3-day course that covers what you need to know about patents from a basic legal and the managerial point-of-view.
Managers, in particular, need to have a fundamental and broad understanding of patents, which are constitutionally-derived rights that serve to legally protecting inventions (e.g., devices, processes, products, materials, software methods, etc.) from unjust infringement by competitors.
For more information, questions, comments, contact us.