What is Intellectual Property?
Intellectual property (IP) refers to the creations of the mind, such as inventions, literary and artistic works, as well as symbols, names, pictures, designs and models used in business. Patents, trade-marks, copyrights, industrial designs, integrated circuit topographies and plant breeders' rights are referred to as "IP rights." Just as rights are acquired when a building or land is purchased, IP rights are "property" in the sense that they are based on the legal right to exclude others from using the property. Ownership of the rights can also be transferred.
You might own a significant number of valuable IP assets; it may be the name of your company, your client listing, your annual report or research paper, your logo or graphic image, or the visual appearance of your product. The records and the documents that protect intellectual property owners' rights contain valuable information. Much of it is available to the public and may be useful to you in many ways.