So, why should you care about protecting your intellectual property?

Intellectual property (IP) often gets put on the back burner by business owners. Here at Suiter Swantz IP, we understand it can be complicated and overwhelming for businesses to find what constitutes IP and how to begin its protection. For more than 25 years, our firm has helped a variety of organizations ranging from individual inventors, and early-stage startups to international multi-billion-dollar corporations navigate the complex landscape of IP procurement and protection.

Intellectual property law can be used to protect several intangible assets. These assets may include inventions, names, logos, symbols, photographs, website content, software code, writing, designs, architectural drawings, music, and similar intellectual works. IP is protected in law by patents, copyright, and trademarks, which enable people to earn recognition or financial benefit from what they invent or create. Trade secrets cover even more things such as client data and lists, recipes, business plans, formulas, and just about anything that is closely held as a secret that brings value to the company.

When you consider the sheer breadth of items that qualify as IP, there is likely a great deal of information that your business uses daily that falls within the definition of intellectual property. Considering how essential IP is to a company’s bottom line, protection of that IP becomes paramount. In fact, on average, 80 percent of a company’s value is in intangible assets. Not sold on the importance of protection yet? Here are three more reasons to protect your IP:

Gain a competitive edge.

Many intellectual property attorneys will ask you to think about what your competition could do if your IP was not protected. Sometimes, IP is easier to understand if you think of it like real estate property. Would you leave your front door open to the entrance of your new home? Chances are you would not only close the door, but you would make sure it was locked. You may even turn on a security system. IP rights & attorneys help protect your intellectual property, just like how locks and systems protect your home.

IP rights like trade secrets can also deter or prevent former employees from using your manufacturing and marketing methods or stealing crucial information like customer lists.

In addition, patents and trade secrets are particularly important to chemical compositions. Competition may be able to identify all the ingredients of a composition, but with IP protection it will be harder for competitors to identify exact amounts and processes.

Create a new revenue source.

Inventors can create a new revenue source by selling, licensing, or using their IP. Much like real estate property, IP can be sold, rented, or used directly by its owner.

A few helpful terms and options to consider when transferring your IP right(s):

  • Transferring IP rights through assignment: the purchase or sale of IP right(s).
  • Transferring IP rights: selling the right(s) to a party to manufacture a patented product while the inventor receives a percentage of the sales, also known as royalties.
  • Transferring IP rights through licensing: an agreement that allows a business or individual to use your IP right(s). Licensing can be transferred in varying degrees. Some inventors sell their IP rights through nonexclusive licenses which allows the inventor to have more control over their IP right(s). Typically, nonexclusive licenses will garner less royalties and may be considered less valuable.

Enhance the value of your business.

Many companies will invest in protecting their IP because it increases the value of their business. Once a business protects their IP, they are far more appealing to investors. Investors also place a heavy emphasis on the reputation of the business and its contacts if they are kept secret through protection. On average, tech startups receive $535,000 more in investment per patent and startups with patents are 35 times more likely to experience “high growth.” IP can also be considered valuable collateral if the inventor is needing to raise capital from investors or need to receive funding from a lender.

Let’s Protect Your IP.

Suiter Swantz IP understands the importance of protecting your innovation, and can help guide you through the IP landscape in a manner that minimizes cost while maximizing value. If you are interested in learning more about our services or have any questions, please contact us today at or click here.

Suiter Swantz IP is a full-service intellectual property law firm providing client-centric patenttrademark, and copyright services. If you need assistance with an intellectual property matter and would like to speak with one of our attorneys, please contact us at