Do I need to file a patent application to use my invention?

There is no requirement to file a patent application on a new idea or invention if you do not wish to do so.  However, without a patent you do not have necessarily the same statutory ability to enforce exclusivity around your idea and to stop others from copying it.

Can I file a trademark application that covers the whole world?

There is no such thing as a global trademark application.  There is an international trademark treaty called the Madrid Protocol, which Canada is presently slated to enter in 2019, which does provide a streamlined international filing process.  Until Canada fully accedes to that treaty however, it is necessary to file your trademark application in each country in which you wish to protect your trademark.

Is my trademark protected if I don’t file an application?

A trademark owner can acquire a significant degree of rights in the trademark simply by its adoption and use in the marketplace.  Registration does present some significant benefits in terms of public notice and the enforceability of a trademark.  Maintaining an accessible list of your registered and unregistered trademarks is a good key business function.

When should I file my trademark application?

Public use of your trademark, at least in the Canadian context, starts to create or crystallize common-law rights in the name that you choose to use, which can be formalized by registration is a federal trademark.

Making Room for IP Strategy in the Boardroom

The approach taken to IP issues, and the importance of the IP assets of the company, fits within the larger context of enterprise strategic planning and management and the board should work together to ensure that the risk profile of IP strategy is in line with the remainder of the corporate structure.

When should I file my patent application?

Generally speaking if you are going to file for patent protection you should do this as soon as possible following the conception of the invention to avoid a public disclosure of the invention which can have a negative impact on the patentability of the invention in many corners of the world.  There is significant limitation to patentability in various countries if the invention is disclosed to the public in advance of filing of a patent application.

What is a copyright notice?

A copyright notice typically includes the copyright symbol, as well as the name of the copyright owner and the year of the publication of the work. Please contact us if you require assistance with the preparation of a copyright notice for use on your material. It is not necessary to mark your work in Canada with a copyright notice of any kind in order to maintain or establish a claim to ownership of the copyright in that work.

Do I need to register my copyright?

Copyright exists automatically in the work as of the time of its creation.  While it is not necessary to register your copyright is often times desirable from an enforcement perspective, since there are an additional basket of rights and enforcement abilities available to a registered copyright owner.  It also provides an ability to strengthen and evidence your copyright ownership.

Does a Canadian patent application protect my invention around the world?

Patents and patent applications are territorially limited – your Canadian patent application does not protect you outside the borders of Canada.

How long does a trademark registration last?

At the present time, a Canadian trademark once registered pursuant to the Trademarks Act, remains registered for 15 years from the date of registration. The registration can be renewed indefinitely, 15 years at a time, so long as the trademark is still in use in commerce. Terms and registration validity rules vary from country to country.