Which ideas can be patented

Protecting ideas: what options are there?

By copyright.de, last update on: May 19, 2021

At the beginning there is often a Brainstorm: Because good ideas and creative concepts often form the basis for innovative business ideas and development new products or services. Until such an idea, however implemented in full can take some time. So that they may not be one unpleasant competitor takes precedence, entrepreneurs and creatives ask themselves whether Protect ideas.

FAQ on "Protecting Ideas"

Is it possible to have an idea protected?

In Germany there are usually no property rights for a pure idea. The embodied form may, however, be subject to copyright or industrial property rights.

Is there a way to protect app ideas without applying for a patent?

“Programs for data processing systems” - as software is referred to in Section 1 (3) of the Patent Act (PatG) - are not considered to be an invention according to the law, so patenting is difficult in itself. Since an app is basically a computer program, the source code on which it is based can fall under copyright protection. Because according to § 2 UrhG, computer programs count among the language works. The protection of the copyright arises with the completion, so that a registration is not necessary.

I want to protect an idea. Are there any costs at the patent office?

The application of an invention as a patent at the DPMA generally incurs fees. How high these turn out to be depends on a wide variety of factors. In the best case, you should expect costs of 390 euros if you have an invention or idea protected. In addition, fees for maintaining the patent are incurred after filing the application.

Is it possible to protect ideas, concepts and drafts?

In Germany it is not possible protect mere ideas allow. So the following principle applies: The ideas are free. However, a protection of ideas is in the embodied form possible. That means that the Idea for a film in which the protagonist turns into a who-hamster, can basically be picked up by anyone. However, write the plot in one script down, can this Property rights subject.

Which right In principle, the question of how to protect ideas depends mainly on what kind of one plant it is and which one purpose to fulfill the embodied form. The possible options include in particular:

  • copyright
    Copyright protection can basically apply to a wide variety of Works of literature, science and art consist. A login or registration is not necessary for this. They also arise for protection no costs.
  • Trademark law
    Graphic representations or designations for Differentiation of goods you can as brand register with the German Patent and Trademark Office (DPMA). Meets for example a logo the necessary requirements, this can in principle one unlimited protection enjoy.
  • Patent law or utility model law
    For technical inventions Ideas can be protected by means of a patent or utility model. There is also a Registration with the DPMA necessary. The term of a patent is included 20 years, whereas a utility model for a maximum ten years is protected.
  • Design law
    The appearance of a product - that is design - can also be protected by registering with the DPMA. The term of protection for design protection is a maximum 25 years.
The legal areas of patent law, trademark law, utility model law and design law are Components of commercial legal protection. If you want to protect ideas in this way, this is particularly the case with the commercial use of the works makes sense.

Is there protection against theft of ideas?

As already mentioned, can Don't protect ideas. Therefore, the most effective idea protection is that remain silent. Because if you are open talk about a concept, there is always the risk that others will help you with the implementation get ahead.

At negotiations with possible Business partnerswith whom you intend to work with in the future, it is also often common to include a Confidentiality Statement or a Non-disclosure agreement to agree. In order to protect your ideas effectively, they should issue a reasonable compensation provide.

Protect ideas - short and compact

The Protection of a pure idea is fundamentally according to German law not possible. However, there is the option that implementation to protect these ideas. Depending on the idea, these are suitable for this copyright or the different forms of gcommercial legal protection.

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Protecting ideas: what options are there?
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