IP asset of a Business:

The IP of an enterprise or business may provide crucial resources for new market opportunities, new inventions, new collaborations and source of new revenue. Realizing that a business or enterprise has an Intellectual property(s) is the first step in IP asset management and tracking. In order to track and manage IP, an enterprise has to first determine the types of IP the enterprise:

(1) Owns and uses.
   a. Copyright
   b. Trademark
   c. Trade service
   d. Trade secret
   e. Know how
   f. Patents granted
   g. Patents filed

(2) Licenses out
   a. Copyright
   b. Trademark
   c. Trade service
   d. Trade secret
   e. Know how
   f. Patents granted
   g. Patents filed

(3) Licenses in
   a. Copyright
   b. Trademark
   c. Trade service
   d. Trade secret
   e. Know how
   f. Patents granted
   g. Patents filed

IP Audit:

An IP audit can be used to identify, catalogue, and evaluate the IP assets of an enterprise. Once an IP audit has been completed, the assets can be tracked as the enterprise enters into new business decisions, including acquiring a new business, starting the development of a new product or service, etc. Based on the review of one's IP asset an enterprise can acquire new business based on need and its ability to strengthen the enterprise. Likewise, based on an IP audit, business decisions to funnel resources from one area to other can be made. Knowing your IP assets can also help in identifying potential competitors or infringers in the market.

Maintaining IP Protection: Cost considerations

Costs associated with IP include fees for maintaining IP protection, such as a protecting a Patent, filing of new IP applications, and legal fees. Once a patent is granted by the USPTO, for maintaining a patent in an active status, the patent owner has to pay a maintenance fee during the life of the patent. Such fees may multiply as the same product or service is patented in multiple countries. An enterprise may make a business decision to pay maintenance fees or not depending upon the value of the patent.

Correspondence with IP rights granting Federal Office: Timeliness of response

When an entity files for an IP protection with the corresponding Federal Office and the Federal Office sends correspondence to the entity for a response from the entity, there may a requirement to respond to the correspondence within a certain time period required by a statute of law. In certain situations, the time period may be extended for a defined time period, while under other situations no extensions may be allowed. Therefore, it is crucial that such correspondence is answered within the allowed time period. Failing to respond in a timely manner may result in abandonment of the IP application such as a patent application or in some other action that may adversely affect the granting of the IP protection. Maintaining a proper docket management system helps in responding to correspondence on time. Failure to respond to deadlines may delay action that may be taken by the administrative agency, or worse, may result in the loss of your property rights. It is incumbent upon you to respond within any time period that may be set.

For additional Information, visit:

http://intellectualpropertyexplorer.com - A free tool for IP asset Identification and IP Audit.