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How trademarks, patents and copyrights differ

On Behalf of | Jul 8, 2022 | Patent Law

When you own a New York business, a good deal of its value may lie in its trade secrets. Trade secrets are the secret formulas, practices or techniques your company uses that make the products or services it offers unique and valuable. When it comes to protecting your intellectual property and preserving its value, there are a number of different steps you might take.

Per the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, many people choose to establish trademarks, patents or copyrights when protecting their businesses’ trade secrets.


A “trademark” refers to any word, phrase, design or combination thereof that shows the source of the goods or services your company provides. When you register a trademark, you help prevent other businesses from using something similar to yours in their own marketing or promotional efforts. Doing so also stops other businesses from registering the same trademark unless you consent to it.


You may need a patent if you created a technical invention, such as a new medication or form of technology, and want to restrict others from using it. A patent prevents others from copying, using or making money off your invention without your permission.


It may serve you well to copyright any works you or your business created that are artistic, literary or intellectual in nature. Used to protect the rights to creative works including books, manuscripts, photos and artistic creations, copyrights prevent others from using or profiting off your intellectual property unless you allow it.

Intellectual property is a critical part of your business’s lifeblood. Thus,  protecting it helps your business maintain its profitability. Failing to do so hinders your ability to benefit from your inventions and creations and may lead to financial losses.