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FAQs

FAQsIP Transactions

What if I do not intend to sell my asset or business?

You should consider an intellectual property audit. An intellectual property audit is a practical and economical long-term solution that allows your company to leverage and manage its creative assets for competitive intelligence and defensive product development. It allows you to detect any defects in your intellectual property rights that may affect the value of your business. Also, it is an early warning system for reducing the high cost of litigation. It is a proactive and preventive approach to managing the intellectual property risks and liabilities faced by every business. You can choose between three types of examination: Basic, InDepth &…
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October 18, 2019
FAQsIP Transactions

Is an intellectual property due diligence review different from an ordinary commercial transaction?

Yes. Since these areas of the law cover different subject matter, the corresponding due diligence reviews are not identical. Intellectual property is a specialized discipline of business/corporate/commercial law. Intellectual property law covers trademarks, copyright, patents, industrial designs and trade secrets. It requires a particular understanding of the scope and strength of intellectual property rights and its impact on the business and the deal terms. In contrast, commercial law is a broader category of business law that covers subject matters including structuring a company, mergers and acquisitions and venture capital investments. In other words, intellectual property deals with “works of the…
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October 18, 2019
FAQsIP Transactions

What is due diligence?

Intellectual property due diligence is the process by which the quality, validity, scope and status of any intellectual property rights can be determined in a commercial transaction. For instance, without conducting an intellectual property due diligence review, after the purchase and sale of a business you may find out that the: domain name is in the name of an ex-employee; trademarks are being used but not registered; business is being sued for trademark infringement for which the new owner is now responsible; or copyright, hence the ownership, in and to the purchased website belongs to someone else. For these reasons,…
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October 18, 2019
FAQsIP Litigation

Why is IP litigation usually in the Federal Court?

While intellectual property matters may be heard in provincial courts, they are usually dealt with in the Federal Court of Canada, which has concurrent jurisdiction. Further, unlike provincial courts, the Federal Courts exercise specialized jurisdiction for intellectual property law proceedings, amongst other issues arising out of federal statutes. The Federal Courts have Canada-wide jurisdiction and enforcement powers. In practice, this means that a person located in Ontario may initiate an intellectual property action or lawsuit against a person in British Columbia for an act that took place in Alberta. If a decision is rendered in favour of the plaintiff, the…
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October 18, 2019
FAQsIP Litigation

What is IP litigation?

IP litigation focuses on the defence and enforcement of IP rights, under the Trademarks Act, Patent Act, Copyright Act, Industrial Design Act, and related trade secrets. Examples of when an IP litigation lawyer may be required include: If you are an artist, and your designs are being sold online or on products without your permission (copyright infringement); You are a trademark owner, and you noticed your trademark (or a similar one), being used by others (i.e., trademark infringement); You are a writer, and another author alleges that your work copies theirs/infringes on their copyright; and / or You want to…
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October 18, 2019
FAQsIndustrial Design

Industrial Design Expertise

Industrial design law is a small category of the law, where the expertise of an industrial design lawyer is highly recommended. In medicine, all doctors are technically qualified to help you. However, when you have a specific problem, you want and need to see a specialist. The same principle is applicable with industrial design issues. In law, all lawyers went to law school to learn the law generally. However, industrial design law is a sub-category of intellectual property law. In fact, intellectual property is in itself is a sub-category of the law. Therefore, not all lawyers know the ins and…
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October 18, 2019
FAQsIndustrial Design

Doing business abroad or exporting

Whether you are physically shipping across Canadian borders or transferring data via the web, wherever you have a competitive edge, there is someone or a business out there that is ready to imitate or “improve” your industrial design. By filing an industrial design application, you are staking your claim in your target markets to safeguard your sales and reputation. That is, you are ‘safeguarding’ your intellectual property rights to your industrial design. While not the same ‘thing’ as a patent, industrial designs are still a ‘category’ of intellectual property law. Canada belongs to several international intellectual property conventions for facilitating…
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October 18, 2019
FAQsIndustrial Design

Filing without an industrial design search or crossing a busy street blindfolded

Prior to crossing the street, it’s recommended to look left and right. Doing so comes with no guarantee that an accident will not happen. However, it allows you to assess a life threatening risk and make an informed decision on whether or not to cross. Similarly, an industrial design search allows you to make an informed decision by learning what has already been registered and how your industrial design can be distinguished from other existing registrations. This proactive step can help save time and money in the long run. Our industrial design law firm located in Ottawa and Toronto strongly…
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October 18, 2019
FAQsIndustrial Design

Loss of Rights by premature public disclosure

Industrial designs, similar to patents, must be novel designs. Part of ensuring novelty of your industrial design means keeping it confidential prior to applying for a registration. However, in Canada there is a one-year grace period to the non-disclosure requirement. In other words, as long as you apply to register your industrial design within one-year of public disclosure, your rights will remain protected. It is crucial that you protect the confidentiality of your industrial design. If you fall outside the one-year grace period, your industrial design will be not be registerable and you will be unable to acquire exclusive rights…
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October 18, 2019
FAQsIndustrial Design

Does my company need an industrial design registration?

Yes, if any or part of your company’s success depends on its intellectual property from designing eye catching products, your company should obtain an industrial design registration. Without a proper intellectual property protection strategy, your company’s existence may be short-lived. With the proper intellectual property protection, your company will have exclusive rights to the industrial design. Industrial designs: can protect you against copying; can earn licensing revenues; may be used as leverage in negotiations; and may be used as a defence in intellectual property infringement litigation. Lastly, research has shown that ownership of registered intellectual property significantly increases the market…
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October 18, 2019