Intellectual property rights refer to the rights that are being possessed by individuals for the creations of their ideas and minds. The creator has been given these rights to authorize him with the exclusive right to the use of his/her thought or creation for a specific duration of time. As any kind of designs, images, symbols, and inventions in the artistic or literary works needs to be protected, IPR serves best. Copyright, trademark, and patents come under IPR Enforcement and help the people in earning recognition or financial benefit from their inventions.
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Why is IPR Enforcement Essential for your Organisation?
- It seeks compensation for loss of profit that results from infringement in the marketplace
- It prevents infringement in the marketplace which in turn also helps in avoiding damage including loss of reputation.
- It preserves and protects the legal validity of its IP rights before the relevant public authority.
With globalization and advances in technology, not only the demand for the enforceability of Intellectual Property Rights has increased but also the scope of the protection of these rights has broadened in the global era. The best part is that judiciary has started taking great interest in the matters associated with Intellectual Property Rights. Thus, it has adopted right strategies to ensure that the respective policies and strategies are executed on ground level by law enforcement authorities.
Effective enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights depends on how aware an individual is regarding the litigations associated with IPR. In order to understand the strategies, litigations, and policies better, a better understanding of the Indian judiciary system and its functions is significant. Government bodies and police are involved in the execution of court orders when it comes to complying with IPR laws.
When it comes to the state level, special Intellectual Property Cells are established to deal with the violation of rules related to IPR matters. If the non-compliance of the court orders gets noticed, an individual is liable or subjected to fine along with the imprisonment that also includes Contempt of Court proceeding. Some remedies are also available for safeguarding and enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights. Administrative, Civil and Criminal remedies are the 3 types of remedies available to the individuals.
In case of imported goods, the IPR Enforcement rules, mentioned in 2007 entitles Custom Officers to impose or enforce IPR on the imported goods. By following a complex procedure, a right holder is free to register his/her Intellectual Property Rights with the customs officials. It is important to know that the registration enforces an administrative duty on the customs department in order to prevent the right holder against violation of his IPR. Custom Authority registered with Central Board of Excise and Customs is authorized to seize, confiscate and intercept the goods that are suspected to be infringing IPR.
In case, the rights provided by IP regime is violated, a civil remedy can be imposed by filing a suit for the infringement in the court. Below mentioned are the remedies available to a claimant in a private civil infringement action.
- Tracing orders
- Award of costs
- Damages or profits made
- Destruction of infringing items and items used to make them
Owners of Copyright, Trademark and Patents can make use of criminal remedies. Trademarks Act 1999 governs the laws of a trademark. Applying for a false trademark, owning instruments for falsifying trademarks, the wrong description of trade, country of origin, etc. are considered to be punishable offenses which include imprisonment up to 3 years including or excluding fine. The Copyright Act, 1957 states that copyright infringement accounts for obligatory punishments of 6 months to maximum 3 years with a fine while the Patents Act, 1970 considers falsification of entries in register, claiming patent rights in an unauthorized way, not providing information, etc. to be punishable offenses as well.