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Assignment of Intellectual Property It is a transfer of ownership of intellectual property rights from one entity to another, often required to be written and signed. Assignable intellectual property rights include, among other things: copyright, patent or trademark registration or a pending patent or trademark application, unpatented inventions and designs, unregistered trademarks, trade secrets, certain asexually created plants, semiconductor mask works, commercial publicity rights of a person's name or likeness, and the rights to pursue protection or enforcement of any of those rights domestically or in other jurisdictions. The United States Patent and Trademark Office recommends recording assignments of patent or trademark rights with the USPTO Assignment Services Division to maintain clear title to pending applications and registrations. The Copyright Office maintains a service for recording transfers or exclusive licenses of copyrights. There are important legal technicalities that go along with certain types of assignments and a qualified attorney should be consulted. For example, an assignment of a trademark without the associated "business goodwill" can be fatal to further enforcement of the trademark. Similarly, imperfect assignment of inventions by all involved inventors may undermine future rights to enforce a patent.

It should also be noted that such transfers may take more time then imagined. Attorneys and even court procedures may have an impact.

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Q: What is an assignment of intellectual property?
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