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Intellectual Property in Spain

Intellectual Property in Spain

Updated on Monday 25th July 2016

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Intellectual property in Spain is protected by a set of national and international rules of law, which aim at providing a comprehensive legal framework for various works and inventions. Both natural persons and legal entities can protect their creations if they are interested to do so. Our team of Spanish lawyers can offer legal assistance to those who are the rightful owners of a work which can be protected under the intellectual property legislation

Types of intellectual property in Spain 

Spain is a member state of the European Union (EU). As such, the national legislation applicable in the field of intellectual property is harmonized with the legal system available in the EU.
According to the local legislation, there are three main categories of intellectual property in Spain
industrial property, which can refer to inventions, patents, trademarks or industrial designs;
artistic work, which can refer to various artistic creations, such as book, plays, music, television broadcasting and others;
commercial strategies – they can refer to confidentiality agreements or know-how. 

The author of intellectual property in Spain 

According to the Spanish legislation, the author is the creator of a literary, artistic or scientific work. It is important to know that the author of a creation which can be protected by the intellectual property rights can’t transfer the ownership rights through sales or donations. 
In the situation of creations which have an author who signed under a pseudonym, the legal provisions state that the author will be the natural person who provided the respective creation, but his or her identity will not be made public; our team of Spanish lawyers can offer more details in this matter. 


Patrimonial rights in Spain  

Those who are interested to protect their creations should know that they have full ownership on the ways in which the respective work will be used. An important aspect is that the creator of a work has full rights on the creation throughout his or her entire life, but also a period of 70 years after the person has passed away. 

Receive a patent in Spain 

The legislation applicable to patents in Spain states that the owner of the patent has exclusive rights over his or her invention for a period of 20 years. After the grant to the exclusive right is terminated, the respective invention will become an asset of the public domain. It is important to know that after the period of 20 year has passed, the invention can be used by other persons or legal entities without the approval of the inventor
The legislation states that such inventions can be used for commercial purposes as well, after the expiration date of the patent. 
Patentable inventions in Spain have to respect several requirements that will attest their validity:
industrial application. 
It is important to know that Spain is a contracting state of the Patent Cooperation Treaty, an agreement which aims to reduce the costs referring to patents for those who want to protect their inventions at an international level
Businessmen interested in receiving further information on the intellectual property in Spain can address to our Spanish law firm for legal assistance. 


  • Mark 2016-07-23

    Hello. I would like to receive legal assistance for the protection of an artistic work.

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