Types of patents and intellectual property rights | RVO.nl

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Types of patents and intellectual property rights


The Netherlands Patent Office, a department of the Netherlands Enterprise Agency, implements (inter)national patenting regulations within the Netherlands and promotes the use of patents as a source of information and inspiration.

We offer support and supervision to entrepreneurs, service organisations, scientists, researchers, students and other interested parties in the Netherlands. You may consult us free of charge regarding any queries about patents and other ways of protecting intellectual property (IP).

Intellectual property rights

Thanks to IP, you can actually turn your new, inventive product or idea into your own property. IP is the right to be the only party that may reap the benefits of an intellectual accomplishment. No other parties shall be permitted to simply adopt an idea or a design, but others may gain inspiration from the published information available to the public about existing, protected products when developing a new product of their own. IP is divided into two categories:

  1. Industrial property, which includes inventions (patents), trademarks, industrial designs, and geographic indications of source.
  2. Copyright, which includes literary and artistic works.

Symbols are often used to indicate the type of protection. Dutch law offers various options to protect inventions and innovations.

Overview intellectual property rights

Right Protection
CopyrightCopyright lawFor works of literature, art and science
Industrial Property RightsPatent lawFor new products or processes
 Trademark law  For word trademarks and pictorial trademarks
 Designs and models law For the exterior of an implement
 Plant breeders’ right For crops
 Topographies of semiconductor productsFor chips