Beyond Borders: Accessing Top-Quality Legal Services for Intellectual Property Protection

As businesses increasingly transition to virtual workplaces, embracing remote meetings and work-from-home arrangements, it is natural to wonder if your lawyer needs to be located in the same state as your business.

For most intellectual property questions, your attorney can be located anywhere in the United States. This is because most of the relevant intellectual property laws involving patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets are federal laws, which apply uniformly throughout the United States. This sets intellectual property attorneys apart from other legal practitioners who may be limited by state-specific regulations.

For example, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is responsible for rules governing federal trademark registration for product and service identification and for issuing patents to inventors, regardless of where the business is located. The same is true for the United States Copyright Office, which is a part of the Library of Congress. The Copyright Office maintains records of all copyright registrations throughout the US. Intellectual property attorneys can file these applications from anywhere.

In fact, because copyright, trademark, and patent rights are governed by federal law and protection extends nationwide, intellectual property attorneys focus on providing a broad spectrum of protection for their clients’ interests that is not confined to any one particular state.

Even before the 2020 shelter-in-place regulations and shutdown, intellectual property attorneys were accustomed to having clients they rarely, if ever, met in person. Telephone, email, and video-conferencing were already powerful tools that allowed intellectual property attorneys to communicate with clients whose needs could be easily handled without the necessity of being located in the same city or state.

The Four Pillars of Intellectual Property: Patents, Trademarks, Copyrights and Trade Secrets

I. Patents

A patent protects an invention, granting the inventor exclusive rights to make, use, sell, or import the invention for a limited period. Given the complexities involved in obtaining a patent, hiring a remote patent attorney can offer significant advantages.

Benefits of Hiring a Patent Attorney

  • Expertise in patent law and procedures
  • Assistance in drafting patent applications
  • Conducting patent searches and analyzing prior art
  • Providing legal advice on patentability
  • Representing clients during the application process

Finding a Qualified Patent Attorney
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) provides a directory of registered patent attorneys and agents. This resource can help you find a qualified patent practitioner, regardless of their location in the United States.

II. Trademarks

A trademark is a word, phrase, symbol, or design that identifies and distinguishes the source of goods or services. Registering a trademark with the USPTO grants valuable legal rights and protections in your mark(s).

Benefits of Hiring a Trademark Attorney

  • Expertise in trademark law and registration procedures
  • Conducting comprehensive trademark searches
  • Interpreting search results and advising on trademark selection
  • Preparing and filing trademark applications
  • Representing clients during the application process and beyond with registration maintenance

III. Copyrights

Copyright protection covers original works of authorship, such as literary, musical, artistic, and other intellectual works. While registration is not required for a copyright to exist, it can provide valuable benefits including benefits when it comes to damages in the event of a dispute.

Benefits of Hiring a Copyright Attorney

  • Expertise in copyright law and registration procedures
  • Assistance in preparing and filing copyright applications
  • Providing legal advice on the scope of copyright protection
  • Enforcing and defending copyright claims
  • Negotiating licensing agreements

IV. Trade Secrets

Trade secrets encompass confidential information that provides a business with a competitive advantage, such as formulas, manufacturing processes, and customer lists. Unlike patents, copyrights, and trademarks, trade secrets are not registered with a government agency. Instead, they are protected by maintaining their secrecy and implementing reasonable measures to prevent unauthorized access or disclosure.

Benefits of Hiring a Trade Secret Attorney

  • Expertise in trade secret law and protection strategies
  • Advising on the development and implementation of trade secret policies
  • Drafting non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) and confidentiality agreements
  • Providing legal advice on misappropriation and enforcement issues
  • Representing clients in trade secret disputes, including litigation

Finding a Qualified Trade Secret Attorney
While the USPTO does not maintain a directory specifically for trade secret attorneys, you can search for attorneys specializing in intellectual property law with experience in handling trade secret matters. Many qualified practitioners have expertise in multiple areas of intellectual property law, including trade secrets, patents, copyrights, and trademarks.


A remote attorney specializing in intellectual property law can provide comprehensive legal services covering patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets. By taking advantage of remote communication technologies and the expertise of attorneys across the United States, you can access top-quality legal services for all aspects of intellectual property protection and enforcement.

At Founders Legal, we are passionate about helping our clients protect their intellectual property. Our team of experienced attorneys understands the nuances of intellectual property law, including patents and trademarks, and can offer comprehensive protection for your business, regardless of where it is located. If you have any questions or would like a consultation, please contact us. By leveraging remote communication technologies and the expertise of attorneys located across the country, you can access top-notch legal services without being limited by geographical constraints.