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Protecting your ideas Protecting your ideas

Got an idea for a product or service but don’t know how to protect it?

The Business & IP Centre Glasgow can help you to identify and protect the Intellectual Property in your business.

Intellectual Property Rights

Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) provide legal protection for ideas and inventions, giving creative artists, inventors and businesses control over how their Intellectual Property (IP) assets are used. There are 4 main types of IPRs – patents, designs, trademarks and copyright


IP BASICS: What is Intellectual Property?

© Intellectual Property Office


A patent protects new inventions and covers how things work, what they do, how they do it, what they are made of and how they are made. A patent gives the owner the right to prevent others from making, using, importing or selling the invention without permission.

Find out more about patents here.

Registered designs

Registered designs protect the appearance of an object in the geographical region in which you register it. The visual appearance of an object can include colour, shape, pattern, texture, material, etc. Registered designs can include clothes, puzzles, furniture and medical equipment.

Find out more about design rights here.

Trade marks

Trade marks, broadly speaking, indicate the origin of goods or services. Traditionally this was done by using words, logos, pictures or a combination of these elements, now trade marks can also be sounds and/or gestures. Shapes of products can also be registered.

Find out more about trade marks here.



Copyright is protection for literary or artistic works. Copyright does not protect ideas for works. It is only when the work has been captured (fixed) in hard copy that it is protected. For example an idea for a book cannot be protected, but once you have written the manuscript then copyright applies.

Find out more about copyright here.


Workshops and Clinics

Workshops: We offer two free workshops ‘A Beginner’s Guide to Intellectual Property’ and ‘Trade Mark Starter Pack’. For more information and to book visit the BIPC Glasgow Eventbrite page

Business information1-2-1 session: These sessions are aimed at anyone with a specific Intellectual Property issue or question. Our specialist staff can help you to understand the different Intellectual Property Rights and how they apply to your business, show you how to make best use of the different Intellectual Property registers and direct you to appropriate information sources and further support. To book your free session email: or tel: 0141 287 2904.

IP Attorney in Residence: In partnership with Creation IP Ltd​  the Business & IP Centre Glasgow offers a confidential environment for you to discuss your ideas, products, designs and brands with a CIPA (Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys) registered patent attorney. For more information and to book your free 30 minute session visit the  BIPC Glasgow Eventbrite page


Useful Links

The Intellectual Property Office
The IPO UK is the official government body responsible for granting intellectual property rights in the United Kingdom. The website of the IPO UK contains a vast amount of information on all forms of intellectual property including what the different types of intellectual property protect, how to apply for the various intellectual property rights and the necessary forms and lists of relevant fees.

European Union Intellectual Property Office
EUIPO, is the EU body responsible for both designs and trademarks that cover the entire EU. It is based in Alicante, Spain.

World Intellectual Property Organization
WIPO is the global forum for intellectual property services, policy, information and cooperation.

United States Patent and Trademark Office
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is the federal agency for granting U.S. patents and registering trademarks.

The Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys
The Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys (CIPA) is the professional and examining body for patent attorneys in the United Kingdom.

The Chartered Institute of Trade Mark Attorneys
Founded in 1934, chartered in 2016, the Chartered Institute of Trade Mark Attorneys (CITMA) is a professional membership organisation with the power to shape law and practice – nationally and internationally.

Advice Direct Scotland
Consumers or businesses can report contraventions of IP legislation to Advice Direct Scotland
Tel: 08081646000

Trading Standards
Trading Standards provide guidance for businesses in IP matters.

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