The world of intellectual property can be confusing at first glance. People and companies and businesses often find it difficult to find the right mechanism to protect a work, a brand, or an innovation.

Most companies have only heard of patents but are unaware of how the various intellectual property protection tools work. For this reason, at Unión Andina we want to explain the most important differences between copyright and industrial property in Peru.

What is copyright?

This is a mechanism that grants protection to all works developed by human beings. Creations such as paintings, musical pieces, literature, poetry, drawings, sculptures and, of course, visual arts enter here. Although we must also consider comics and the infinite world of audiovisual works.

Copyright is acquired from the beginning of the work. That is, at the same time an original novel is written, or a documentary is filmed, this protection is obtained, which recognizes the person or group behind the work.

The different registries for the works were created to certify that these copyrights exist, although it is not a mandatory step.

To guarantee copyright in Peru, the Virtual Registry of Works was created. This database in charge of the National Institute for the Defense of Competition and the Protection of Intellectual Property (Indecopi), allows anyone to present their work and to certify their authorship.

What is industrial property?

Another of the tools of intellectual property is more related to the commercial purpose. The idea is to protect all that set of innovations and brands that are intended for industry or commerce.

This protection is granted to those who seek to protect the brand that distinguishes the products or services of the business, and the technology (innovations) that the entrepreneur has developed with effort. They are divided into two large groups: distinctive signs and inventions.

Distinctive signs

The trademarks are the most commonly used, most far-reaching and widely accessible tool in this group. This is adequate protection for producers, manufacturers, and traders to distinguish their products and services.

The brand, which are a type of distinctive signs, are registered and granted a 10-year protection in Peru. This right can be renewed unlimitedly every 10 years and its only condition is that the official renewal fee be paid.

Inventions

This is a type of industrial property recognition that is granted to the technology involved in the products, machinery or utility innovations that are made (1). Their protection is done through a patent in Peru, and they have a maximum period of 20 years for invention patents and 10 years for utility models.

Patents are granted only and exclusively to inventions that are novel, imply an application in the industry and have sufficient inventive step. It is possible to obtain a patent, for example, after creating a technical advantage in a mechanical device (utility model patent) or a new drug (invention patent).

Search Engines and Database

If a company wants to register its brand in Peru, it can use the free “Search your brand” tool offered by Indecopi to find out if there are similar brands already registered or pending. While in the case of inventions, backgrounds can be searched in international databases such as the Patentscope of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) or in national databases in Indecopi.

Protecting intellectual property is a very important step for those who seek to obtain financial benefits from their creations, inventions, or brands. At Unión Andina we not only provide support to innovators and entrepreneurs in Peru, but we also become their strategic partners in case they want legal advice and guidance to protect their intangibles in other Latin American countries.

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    Instituto Nacional de Defensa de la Competencia y de la Protección de la Propiedad Intelectual (2020) El ABC de la Propiedad Intelectual: registra y patenta. (National Institute for the Defense of Competition and the Protection of Intellectual Property (2020) The ABC of Intellectual Property: register and patent.) Lima Peru. Available at http://www.indecopi.gob.pe/