Intellectual property

February 16, 2023


Insights on legal domains

Intellectual property (IP) law concerns the rights granted to an individual who creates intellectual content. They generally grant creators the exclusive right to use their creations for a certain period of time.

In general, intellectual property rights are divided into two parts: On the one hand, copyright and related rights and on the other hand, industrial property.

Copyright law requires that any user of a work must obtain permission from the author, inventor or simply the person who would own the rights to use it. Copyright can apply to books, photographs or drawings, software, websites or scientific content.

Industrial property refers to trademark law and includes the protection of distinctive commercial signs linked to a trademark such as its logo, slogan, geographical indications or simply its commercial name. Trademark registration allows a company to promote itself by avoiding unfair competition while protecting the interests of its customers. It is also the protection of innovative technological concepts, usually protected by patents. The patentability of these concepts gives the holder an exclusive right, albeit limited in time, in principle 20 years from the filing of the patent application.

In our modern economy, it is not uncommon for a company to have many intangible assets that represent a large portion of the company's value. These intangible assets are often among the most valuable assets a company owns and include its intellectual property, trade secrets, creations, inventions, know-how, data and even the name and shape of its products.

Having intellectual property rights gives a company a serious competitive advantage. In order to guarantee maximum added value in the development and marketing of your intangible assets, it is important to put in place an IT strategy adapted to your situation requiring the intervention of an intellectual property lawyer. With a team of more than 130 lawyers with diverse skills and an average of 10 years of experience, we will be able to handle all of your needs. Our specialization in intellectual property law has led us to work with major brands, banks, technology companies, pharmaceutical and consumer product companies and start-ups who trust us.

If you develop a strong brand, it will ensure that you are never forgotten by your customers. If you develop a patent, your competitors will find it very difficult to exploit your ideas and develop a similar concept. As a result, you will be able to enjoy a market monopoly! If in addition to this you develop copyright or design rights, you will benefit from tax advantages such as increased salary, unchanged income and lower taxes on your business income.

Our team of specialized lawyers has extensive expertise in both literary and artistic property law and industrial property law, including trade names, trademarks and domain names, copyright, database rights, patents and designs.

Our team will provide you with legal and business advice to define the best strategy to protect and enforce your intellectual property rights with the objective of minimizing the risk of theft of your concept. Our legal consulting role includes practical and pragmatic advice that can be used directly within your company.

Our team has extensive experience in contract drafting and negotiation as well as in the field of intellectual property and is qualified to draft and review your contracts related to intellectual property such as:

  • The development of a licensing agreement
  • Technology transfer between companies
  • Drafting an intellectual property transfer agreement
  • Drafting of employee contracts
  • Drafting of contracts for the transfer of intangible assets
  • Drafting of research and development (R&D) contracts
  • Drafting of distribution contracts
  • The drafting of a franchise agreement
  • Drafting of consortium contracts
  • Drafting a trademark coexistence agreement
  • Drafting of merchandising and sponsoring contracts
  • The drafting of an NDA (a non-disclosure agreement)
  • Drafting a non-competition agreement
  • Drafting of intellectual property clauses in a contract as well as in a work regulation
  • Drafting of IP contracts in the context of subcontracting, mergers or acquisitions of technology companies

We are able to warn you of the risks associated with the development of an intellectual property contract by means of due diligence operations in this area.

Our team places particular emphasis on the development of advice and, above all, the defense of your intellectual property rights within your company.

More specifically, we are competent in :

  • Protect your name (registration of your company name and trade name)
  • Protect your intellectual creations (your copyrights and related rights)
  • Protect your inventions by obtaining a patent
  • Protecting your designs
  • Protect your know-how (or Know How) and trade secrets from disclosure
  • Protecting you against unfair trade practices and free riding

Our team is also competent to help you with legal procedures in case of litigation.

In the event of any dispute, our team will work tirelessly to ensure that your intellectual property rights are respected, or to defend you against any recourse formulated by the rightful owners.

We can help you to collect evidence of infringement of your rights through unilateral proceedings to protect you from infringement such as

  • The procedure of seizure-infringement (i.e. obtaining the right to go to a market player likely to infringe your patent, assisted by an expert and a bailiff, to find evidence of any infringement) ;
  • Destruction of counterfeit products ;
  • Claiming and obtaining damages for your company ;
  • The implementation of opposition and invalidation (nullity) procedures for trademarks within the European Union.

We are prepared to plead before all competent Belgian courts and handle any disputes before the courts of the European Union or another competent jurisdiction. We can also assist you in opposition proceedings before the European Union Intellectual Property Office.

If you wish to rely on a great expertise in the field of intellectual property law with the help of lawyers adapted to your needs and able to offer you a tailor-made solution, do not hesitate to contact us. We can be reached via email and our website, and will get back to you within 24 hours.