Scope of an intellectual property attorney

The area of intellectual property is a minefield for many who are unfamiliar with the laws and regulations surrounding the industry. Commonly abbreviated to IP, it is a vast and complex area that many commercial businesses and IP owners have to navigate in order to successfully register their IP rights. When seeking registration of your intellectual property, it is highly advised that an IP attorney is enlisted to assist you.

Responsibilities of an intellectual property attorney

Intellectual property attorneys possess the necessary skills, professional qualifications, and expertise to assist owners in obtaining ownership rights in their chosen jurisdictions. Whether your IP is a mark, piece of music, invention, idea or literary work, it is advised that the services of an attorney in the field are sought when seeking registration of IP rights.

An attorney who specializes in the area of trademarks or patents for example, will have the resources and working relationships to obtain the appropriate rights for owners in a timely and cost effective way, thus it is prudent to consult with the most relevant attorney within the area of intellectual property.

Each jurisdiction will vary in regards to the scope of responsibilities and qualifications of such attorneys. In some countries, IP attorneys do not solely specialize in this area while in other jurisdictions, IP attorneys study and practice IP law exclusively.

Some of the main responsibilities of an intellectual property attorney include but are not limited to;

  • Conduct IP searches
  • Advise on the  requirements that must be met for registration
  • File IP registration applications
  • Obtain rights on behalf of an IP owner
  • Perform IP renewals
  • Advise or represent clients in IP infringement cases
  • Provide watch services, e.g., trademark watch

An IP attorney is technically a legal practitioner that specializes in intellectual property, but it is not essential for all attorneys to have studied intellectual property to qualify. Many practitioners are attorneys at law who also offer assistance in cases involving intellectual property. As mentioned the qualifications and requirements of an IP attorney vary according to the jurisdiction you are from.

Without enlisting the services of an IP attorney, owners may find the process of registering their rights significantly more complicated and time consuming. It is a prudent measure for all owners of intellectual properties to consult with an attorney as this will demonstrate to a court that due diligence and good faith was executed when seeking IP rights.