IP, Patents for Start-ups and Entrepreneurs (Part VIII): IP Protection Checklist
This checklist provides some of the basic steps every start-up must take to protect its intellectual assets.
- Identification of inventions with potential for patent filings
- Patent Search and Patentability Analysis
- Inventor Assignment Agreement Execution – To transfer all rights to the start-up
- Provisional or complete patent filing
- Foreign Filing Permit, if required
- PCT, or foreign patent filing
- Patent pending notice on relevant materials
Trade Mark Protection
- Shortlisting of Marks
- Identification of relevant classes of business
- Trademark Clearance Search
- Trademark Filing for word, logo, and domain name, if relevant
- Agreement with designer to transfer all rights to the Start-up
- Trademark notices on all materials – visiting cards, brochures, website, etc.
- Shortlisting of important works
- Copyright application filing
- Copyright notices on all works
- Agreements to transfer IP Rights to start-up with website designer, brochure designer, interface designer, etc.
Trade Secret Protection
- Non-Disclosure Agreement Template
- Confidentiality notices on all materials – Proposals, Documents, etc.
- Secrecy measures to prevent loss of information
Industrial Design Protection
- Identification of aesthetic designs for articles
- Industrial Design Filing
- Incorporation of notices
- Employment Agreement with strong IP clauses
- Services Agreements with strong IP clauses
- Non Disclosure Agreement
For e-commerce Start-ups
- Well Drafted Terms and Conditions – Templates of other companies must be avoided
- Take Down Policy and Process
Note: The checklist in this document/post provides only the basic IP protection steps to be taken by a start-up, or entrepreneur. This does not constitute advise, or opinion of any sort, and a start-up may acquire opinion of an expert before embarking on an IP protection strategy.