Patents vs. trade secrets: Deciding which option is best for you

| Jun 13, 2017 | Trade Secrets

When it comes to protecting your intellectual property, you have two powerful options at your disposal. You can file for a patent or you can opt to license your property as a trade secret. Both of these choices are valuable, but how can you know which option is best for you?

As attorneys, we naturally advise our readers to seek counsel from a lawyer to determine the best choice. However, you can also learn about these options on your own to improve your education about the law. Essentially, the choice you make will depend upon your needs, the property in question and the kind of security you want to acquire. Below you will find some points to consider when choosing a protection for your property.

— Trade secrets can be licensed indefinitely while patents only last for 20 years.

— Trade secret protection does not stop a competitor from reverse engineering your property.

— If your property is innovative or difficult to reverse engineer, a trade secret license may be the best protection option.

— Modern law offers an excellent chance to seek damages if someone misappropriates your trade secret.

In the end, you will need to give the matter a lot of thought and try to view the property in question from more than one perspective. As the creator of intellectual property, you might find it difficult to broaden your viewpoint to include any potential legal problems. This is why it is so important to seek a legal opinion from a professional.

We urge you to read more about protecting your intellectual property. You will find additional information about these topics as well as California law on our website.