Navigating the Complexities of Intellectual Property in Business
There are key steps that entrepreneurs need to take to set up a new business, including deciding which entity type is best for them, and the tax and legal obligations that come with being a business owner.
Recently, the Scale Your Small Business podcast welcomed Jessica Shraybman, a highly qualified lawyer who specializes in business and intellectual property law. She is a member of the Florida Bar’s Intellectual Property subcommittee, and serves on the Intellectual Property Board certification task force. Additionally, she is a board member of several Miami-based non-profit organizations, and graduated with honors from the University of Miami and was in the top 20 percentile of her class at Florida International College of Law. As a native Russian speaker, she is the first member of her family to be born in the United States.
She shared with us that the US Constitution includes provisions related to protecting creativity and the arts. Intellectual property generally includes trademarks, copyrights, and patents. Trademarks protect a brand’s name and logo, copyrights protect creative works such as photographs, paintings, books, and music, and patents protect inventions and technical solutions. Shraybman noted that ideas themselves are difficult to protect, but their manifestation in a physical or tangible form can be protected. In the context of online businesses and educational resources, IP protections can be built into participation agreements and terms of engagement. She also discussed the concept of intellectual property (IP) and how it relates to art and business. She gave an example of a street artist entering into a partnership with a liquor company, using copyrights and a partnership agreement to protect the artist’s characters and set guidelines for their use. Overall, she emphasized that IP protection is a multi-faceted approach that can be difficult to navigate, but can be made clearer through well-written agreements and contracts.