The worst feeling is to spend hours and thousands of dollars creating unique concepts for your restaurant and turning around to see a poorly copied version down the street. Restaurateurs need to protect their intellectual property. We’ll start seeing more and more trademarks & copyrights in restaurant menus and signage. What should you do to protect yourself?
Trademarks & Copyrights in Restaurant Menus and Signage
You will notice that everywhere Burger King uses the word “Whopper” they have their trademark registration notice along with it. More restaurants and chains are taking measures and precautions to protect their intellectual property from copycats and idea thieves.
If you are using ANY words, phrases, images, recipes, or other intellectual property that you don’t want others to use freely, you should seek the help of an intellectual property attorney and add the proper protections into your operation (on menus, in employee manuals, etc.)
There are a lot of copycats in the restaurant industry and intellectual property will keep heating up as a field of law impacting the restaurant industry. Please be sure those working on your menus and other creative materials are aware of the laws and your policy and that you have protections in place for your intellectual property.