Protect

Make sure you have a plan for protecting your concept. Talk to an intellectual property (IP) attorney about protection through patents, copyrights, trademarks, service marks, and trade secrets. A well-protected concept will help you attract investors.

Considerations

  • Work with an expert to develop an IP protection plan. This may include a determination of whether your concept is patentable by conducting a search of current patents, as well as pending patents that may compete with your technology.
  • Your IP protection plan should consider the time it will take to protect your technology. Consider how much funding is needed, and from what sources, to sustain the continued development of your technology while you wait.
  • Register your trademark, key brand, product names, or any logos.
  • If you are utilizing software with publicly available code, determine whether any of the code is covered by a license agreement.
  • Develop and implement agreements that ensure any work produced by your employees or independent contractors is the property of the company.
  • Register domains for websites and social media.

Resources

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)

The USPTO provides general information concerning the processes for obtaining patents and trademarks.

USPTO: What are Patents, Trademarks, Servicemarks, and Copyrights?

The USPTO provides definitions for various types of intellectual property.

USPTO Patent Search Tool

The USPTO provides a database search engine for detecting whether a patent has already been filed or granted that is similar to your patent.

Canada Business Network: Copyright and Intellectual Property

The Canada Business Network provides resources and information related to how IP works in Canada.

Canadian Intellectual Property Office

The Canadian Intellectual Property Office is responsible for the administration and processing of IP in Canada, including trademarks, patents, copyright, industrial designs, and integrated circuit topographies.

MaRS Intellectual Property Protection for Startups

MaRS provides general information on intellectual property best practices.

Canadian Intellectual Property Office

The Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) is responsible for the administration and processing of the greater part of intellectual property in Canada. CIPO’s areas of activity include trademarks, patents, copyright, industrial designs, and integrated circuit topographies.

Fast Forward Medical Innovation: Commercialization of Life Science Technologies

Fast Forward Medical Innovation provides information to help biomedical researchers accelerate their innovations from idea to impact. This presentation highlights medical device development, FDA regulation, intellectual property, mentorship opportunities, and funding resources.