Ireland offers an attractive framework for the protection of intellectual property, which may refer to patents, trademarks, copyrights and other intellectual intangible assets belonging to an individual or a local/foreign company. Ireland has a set of tax reliefs available for corporations involved in operations which are based on various intellectual property assets. Foreign investors interested in opening a company in Ireland should know that thelegislation offers many tax incentives for businesses in the field of research and development; our law firm in Ireland can provide you with an in-depth presentation on the Intellectual Property Law.
Intellectual property rights in Ireland
According to the Irish legislation, a patent (the right given to the owner for the invention of a useful machinery or industrial product) is given on a territorial basis, meaning that an Irish patent is available only on the Irish territory. According to the Irish Patent Act, a patent right is given for ten years (short-term patent) or twenty years.
A trade mark is another type of intellectual property, designating the way in which a company or brand identifies and distinguishes its business identity and products or services provided on the consumer market. The Trade Marks Act 1996 specifies that a trademark can be represented by words, logos, letters and other graphic signs.
The design of a new product or part of a product is also protected by the intellectual property rights and it can refer to shapes, colors and other features of the product; a new design can be protected for 25 years.
Another class of intellectual property refers to copyrights, which protects a broad area of works, such as:
• literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works;
• film production;
• computer programmes.
The copyrights are protected for the entire life period of their creator and after the death of the creator, the works are protected for 70 years in respect to their distribution or reproduction; our lawyers in Ireland can offer you more details upon this subject.
Intellectual property rights can sometimes be disputed during divorce in Ireland. When the spouses held joint rights over these, working with a divorce lawyer is advisable in order to reach an agreement. A solicitor can help you sort complex matters that concern the division of assets, property, and other important issues such as arrangements for children after divorce.
Research and development in Ireland
Companies registered in Ireland in the field of research and development (R&D) may benefit of various grants, offered for operations in the field of R&D carried out on the Irish territory. The Irish government will provide a Technical Feasibility Study Grant for companies developing a new product or service; the grant can cover 50% of the company’s expenditure, but is limited to a sum of EUR 35,000.
If you need further information on the intellectual property law, please contact our team of lawyers in Ireland.