Own-it | Intellectual Property Know-How for Creative Businesses


What steps should I take to protect IP rights that I can’t register?

Published 01.11.08 at 13:02

First, You should make sure you have evidence (a paper trail) to prove you are the creator/IP owner of any IP. This includes preparatory documents, drawings, sketch books etc showing the creation of your work with proof of its date, for example, dated digital photographs.

Second, you should assert your rights clearly in all dealings and correspondence, for example, using the copyright symbol plus the date, your name and signature.

Third, consider approaching agents, for example, copyright collection societies (such as DACS for designers and artists and the PRS for music, or trade marks agents to protect as well as enforce your rights. All these steps will help show the other party / your client that you are aware of your rights, and are professional in your business dealings and this will help deter them from taking advantage of you.

To find out more, read our factsheets on copyright, patents and registered designs.

Read our article: Doing the rights thing for a step-by-step guide on protecting, exploiting and managing your intellectual property.

Content supplied by Daniel McClean. Photo credit: Batega


Please note that this article discusses the legal position in the UK at the time of publication. It provides general information only but is not to be regarded as legal advice. You must take advice from a specialist lawyer in relation to your specific circumstances. Further, you should seek additional legal advice when dealing with parties based in other parts of the world or works originating from other parts of the world as the legal position may vary.


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