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Counselors to America's Small Business
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Do You Need a Patent or Copyright?
Protection for your products, processes or written words can be enhanced by securing a patent, trademark or a copyright.  Patent protection allow you to prevent others from making, using or selling the patented item, as set forth in the claims portion of the patent. 

Patents can be either a utility patent (covering a process, machine, manufacture or composition of matter, etc.) or a design patent (covering a new, original or ornamental design for an article of manufacture, etc.), depending upon the item being covered.

Trademarks and service marks provide protection for words, names, symbols, logos and similar items.  A copyright is used to cover books, articles, advertising copy, software, artwork and similar items.

If you believe you have a special product, process, name, written piece or other item that could be protected by the patent and copyright laws, you should seek a good patent attorney.  You should secure the attorney's advice BEFORE you market the item or the protection may not be available.  For more information, go to the following websites:

www.uspto.govwww.copyright.gov