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Secure intellectual property through trademarks, copyrights, and patents (New Business Checklist)

Register trademarks

If there are any names, words, or phrases you want to protect as a trademark or service mark, it may be a good idea to clear your use for conflicts with others' marks and to register the trademark with the federal government. You will probably need to hire a professional to do the job for you. To find out more, visit the Go online United States Trademark Electronic Business Center.

Register copyrights

If your business will rely on any published material, consider registering the copyright in it. You may need to consult a professional. Go to the Go online United States Copyright Office for more information.

Apply for patents

If you will be marketing an invention, you may want to apply for patents. The patent process is very complicated, so it is strongly recommended you consult a patent lawyer. For more information, visit the Go online United States Patent Electronic Business Center.

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