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If you suspect that somebody has breached your intellectual property, there are a variety of steps that you can take in order to confront the other party about this matter and seek to resolve the breach.

It is important for you to be able to identify the intellectual property that you believe has been infringed by the other party and to understand what rights you have in this intellectual property, if anything. For example, if you have created a brand name that you believe is unique to your business and someone else has begun to use it, the intellectual property you are seeking to protect could be a trademark. However, you may not have registered this trademark or someone may have already registered this trademark and used it to identify their own business. In these circumstances, you may not have any intellectual property rights that you can enforce against any other party since you have not registered your trademark and you do not have any recognisable rights to it.

In such circumstances, it is a good idea to speak with an intellectual property lawyer as soon as possible to find out what your rights are so that you can plan how to best resolve the dispute.

Letter of demand

If you, after speaking with a lawyer, have identified the type of intellectual property that has been breached and you believe that you have rights in this intellectual property to be enforced, you may prepare a letter of demand setting out your claim.

A letter of demand can be written to the party who you believe has breached your intellectual property rights setting out their alleged breach, the damages you have suffered and how you would like the other party to remedy this alleged breach.

For information on how to write a letter of demand, please see:

Dispute Resolution

Resolving a dispute through alternative dispute resolution mechanisms is often a good appraoch. Through engaging in arbitration, mediation or conciliation you and the other party can negotiate how you would like this dispute to be resolved and on what terms. Alternative dispute resolution mechanisms are often preferred to litigation due to the benefits of saving time and resources in coming to a mutually desirable outcome.

Going to court

Litigation is often a costly and stressful process that is usually a last option for parties wishing to resolve disputes. However, some disputes cannot be resolved easily and it may be necessary to proceed to litigation if it cannot be resolved otherwise.

If you are considering proceeding to litigation, you can speak with an intellectual property lawyer who can set out your rights and advise you on your prospects of success.


While there are a variety of options open to parties wish to rectify breaches of their intellectual property, it is often wise to seek legal advise so that you can decide for yourself what could be the best option for you.


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