Trademarks and Copyrights

Protect your work, your business and domain name from infringement.

Filing a trademark or copyright today will help you retain exclusive rights to your original work and brand now and in the future.

Learn more about the differences between a trademark and copyright below.

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Trademark vs. Copyright: Which Do You Need?

Trademark

Register a Business Name or Logo (™)

  • Notice the registrant's claim of ownership of the mark
  • Legal presumption of ownership nationwide
  • Exclusive right to use the mark
  • Includes logos, business / product names and slogans.

Copyright

Protect Your Works of Art (©)

  • Sue for infringement if somebody violates your copyright
  • Protects original works of authorship
  • Create a public record of your work
  • Includes literary, dramatic, musical, and artistic works

Protect Your Intellectual Property

Can I copyright a business name? What is the difference between a copyright and a trademark? These are common questions asked by business owners who aren't completely sure which one of these protections they need. A copyright is a form of protection provided by U.S. laws to the authors of "original works of authorship", while a trademark is intended to protect brand property such as logos, business names and services. Learn the differences between them to better understand which are important for your business by watching our video.

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Trademark or Copyright

What is the difference between a trademark and a copyright?


How Do I Protect My:

TrademarkTM

Copyright©

Unique Logos

Business Name : ( McDonalds )

Product Name: ( Crest Toothpaste )

Unique Service : ( FedEx )

Slogans : ( Just Do It. )

Song or Album

Scripts : ( Movie, TV, Play )

Photographs

Frequently asked questions

Because copyrights are protected from the time the work is created and fixed in a tangible medium, you are entitled to use the © symbol from the time the work is fixed. However, the work is afforded greater protection once it is registered with the U.S. Copyright Office.

The duration of copyright protection recently changed as a result of the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act of 1998. The easiest rule to state is that copyrights have expired on all United States works registered or published prior to 1923. As a result, all such works have entered into the public domain.

After 1923, it is more complicated to determine when a copyright will expire. Like the old provisions, the duration of copyright protection under these new provisions depends upon when the work was created and first published.

Works Originally created on or after January 1, 1978: This is governed by statutory section 17 USC 302. According to this section, a work that is created (fixed in tangible form for the first time) on or after January 1, 1978 is ordinarily given a term enduring for the author's life, plus an additional 70 years after the author's death.

In the case of "a joint work" prepared by two or more authors that was not a "work made for hire," the term lasts for 70 years after the last surviving author's death. For works made for hire, and for anonymous and pseudonymous works (unless the author's identity is revealed in Copyright Office records), the duration of copyright will be 95 years from publication or 120 years from creation, whichever is shorter.