Types of Intellectual Property

1. Patents

A patent is an exclusive right that allows an inventor to prevent others from manufacturing, selling, or using the patent owner's invention. In exchange for this right, the patent owner makes technical information about the invention publicly available in the published patent document.

2. Copyrights

Copyright is a legal term used to describe the rights that creators have over their literary and artistic works. Works covered by copyright range from books, music, paintings, sculpture and films, to computer programs, databases, advertisements, maps and technical drawings.

3. Trademarks

A trademark is a word, phrase, symbol, or design, or a combination thereof, that identifies and distinguishes the source of goods or services of one party from those of others.

4. Trade Secrets

A trade secret may consist of any formula, pattern, physical device, idea, process, compilation of information, or other information that provides a business with a competitive advantage, and is treated in a way that can reasonably be expected to prevent the public or competitors from learning about it.

Disclosing a New Invention or Work

1. Invention Disclosure

If you need to disclose a new invention, the first step is to submit an Invention Disclosure Form. An "invention" is any new process, machine, article of manufacture, design, or composition of matter, or any new and useful improvement thereof.

2. Work Disclosure

If you need to disclose a new work of authorship, please submit a Works Disclosure Form. A "work" is any original literary, dramatic, musical, architectural, cartographic, choreographic, pantomimic, pictorial, graphic, sculptural, or audiovisual creation.