Definitions of Intellectual Property




Patents protect new inventions such as a new mouse trap or a new pharmaceutical. Patent law gives a patent owner the right to exclude everyone else from making, using, or selling a product that falls within the invention as described in the pat-ent's claims.


Copyrights protect the expression of an idea. They protect works of art such as paintings, screenplays, songs, or sculptures. The law gives the copyright owner the right to exclude anyone else from, among other things, copying, performing, or in some cases changing the copyrighted work.


Trademarks protect a link in the consumer's mind between a particular good or service and the source of that good or service. The law gives trademark owners the right to prevent confusion in the minds of customers caused by another party using a simi-lar trademark. No customer confusion; no trade-mark infringement.

Trade secrets:

Trade secrets protect any knowledge that gives a business a competitive advantage over another, usually similar, business as long as the business takes appropriate measures to keep its knowledge secret. The law gives trade secret owners the right to stop misappropriation of the secret material or stop the use of the secret material if it was misap-propriated.

Intellectual Property Attorneys

Intellectual property attorneys are attorneys that deal with any of these types of property.

Charles Runyan, Ph.D. is of counsel at Gallagher & Kennedy, P.A. He holds a Ph. D. in Chemistry and has extensive experience in chemical-based inven-tions, medical devices, and is accomplished in the mechanical arts. Additionally, his practice includes trademarks, copyrights, and all forms of intellec-tual property litigation.

For further information, please contact:

Chuck Runyan



2575 East Camelback Road

Phoenix, Arizona 85016-9225

Phone (602) 530-8000 Fax (602) 530-8500


Charles Runyan providing this article and you reading it does not mean that he has provided you legal advice. Since all legal matters are intensively fact specific, all matters require individualized consideration. In view of that, you should regard this article as GENERAL guidance and not as a de-finitive statement of the law. His comments are non-specific and you should not rely on them as le-gal advice. He does not offer you legal advice or be-come your attorney until: (i) you first elect to hire him, (ii) you and he sign an engagement agreement that sets forth what legal services he will provide and how you will be charged, and (iii) you pay any required fee or security deposit.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Charles Runyan, KEYTLaw | Attorney Advertising

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