In Canada, as in many other jurisdictions around the world, intellectual property rights are grouped into six categories. Here’s what they cover:
Covers words – such as names, slogans and taglines – and designs, such as logos, that identify the goods and services of a person or business. Term of protection: Renewable 15-year period.
Refers to the right to an invention which prevents others from making, using or selling it in Canada. Term of protection: Up to 20 years after filing.
Applies to original works of music, art, drama, performances, communication signal, sound recordings, and computer programs. Term of protection: Throughout the right holder’s lifetime, plus an additional 50 years.
Refers to the shapes and patterns that are applied to a product – for example, the shape of a perfume bottle. Industrial designs that are original and visually appealing can be registered with the Canadian government and protected under the Industrial Design Act. Term of protection: Up to 10 years.
Integrated circuit topographies
Cover original layout designs of integrated circuits. Term of protection: 10 years.
Plant breeders’ rights
Cover plant varieties and prevent reproduction of these varieties without permission from the rights holder. Term of protection: Up to 18 years.
Special to The Globe and Mail