In today’s highly competitive and globalized world, businesses must protect their intellectual property to ensure long-term success. Two essential tools for protecting intellectual property are patents and trademarks. This article will introduce you to worldwide patents and trademarks and help you understand: what they are, how they work, and why they are important for your business.
Worldwide patents and trademarks
A patent is a legal document that gives an inventor the right to exclude others from making and selling the patented invention. Similarly, a trademark is a symbol, word, or phrase that identifies and distinguishes a product or service from other companies. Trademarks are essential for building brand recognition and customer loyalty.
One worldwide patent does not exist. Likewise, one worldwide trademark does not exist. Rather, separate patent and trademark applications must be filed in each country you desire. Filing in so many applications in so many countries can be a daunting task.
We have a network of foreign patent and trademark associates that assist us in securing patent and trademark rights worldwide. We have associates in Europe, Asia, Canada, Mexico, and many other countries. No matter where you would like to protect your invention, we can help you to secure patent and trademark rights there.
International patent application
Although no single patent exists that can be enforced worldwide, you can file a single PCT application to secure patent pendency protection for your invention in more than 150 countries throughout the world. The Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) is an international agreement that facilitates obtaining patent protection in multiple countries. Under the PCT, inventors can file a single international patent application, recognized in over 150 countries that are party to the treaty.
International trademark application
If you want to protect your trademark internationally, you will need to apply for international trademark protection. The most common way to do this is through the Madrid System, which allows businesses to file a single international trademark application that is recognized in over 120 countries.
Strategy for protecting your inventions and brands worldwide
We have a strategy for cost-effectively securing worldwide patent and trademark protection for you if that is the right decision. We help you through a consultation to determine your needs on the worldwide stage. After the consultation, it might be better to forego worldwide patent protection. Alternatively, it may be advisable to seek patent protection in only a few select countries. No matter the decision, you’ll understand why or why not.
We don’t blindly do what you ask. Rather, we discuss the pros and cons of filing a PCT application versus filing in individual countries and so much more.
We take pride in our practical approach to counseling clients, especially for foreign filing. Worldwide patent and trademark protection isn’t for everyone but if it is for you, we are here to get the job done.
We understand the difficulties in building a profitable business overseas and that it is not simply replicating what you have here in the United States. We cover these difficulties as well as the financial forecasts so that you understand what to expect in the future should you pursue foreign patent and trademark rights.
Working with Clients Throughout Orange County & Beyond
Because we are located in Irvine, many of our clients live or work in Orange County, California communities like Mission Viejo, Aliso Viejo, and Santa Ana. But we also work with clients in surrounding areas, like the San Gabriel Valley, Los Angeles County, and elsewhere in Southern California.
Patent filings worldwide grew by 3.6% in 2021. Trademark and industrial design filing activity grew by 5.5% and 9.2%, respectively. Patent filings around the world exceeded 3.4 million, trademark filing activity totaled 18.1 million and industrial design filing activity amounted to 1.5 million. Applications for utility models – a special form of patent right – dropped by 2.5% to 2.9 million applications.
The primary benefit of patent and trademark protection worldwide is that you can stop others from competing against you.
Another significant benefit is that licensees and investors are more likely to invest if you have a strategy for protecting your invention and brand on the worldwide stage.
The cost is the most significant challenge in obtaining worldwide patent and trademark protection.
Our strategy, in a nutshell, is to resolve any issues with your U.S. filing first, then to export those particulars to the other countries. By doing so, you can reduce a number of problems and hopefully secure the patent and trademark without arguing with the examiner.
The cost to file a PCT application will range between $4,500 to $6,500 depending on the selected search authority.
The cost to file a patent application in any one country will range between $2,000 to $20,00 depending on whether a translation is required.
Obtaining worldwide patent and trademark protection increases your ability to license and attract investors.
Licensees and investors would be reassured that you have protection not only here in the U.S. but also in foreign countries where copying may be rampant.