Some Questions And Answers On Intellectual Property

October 1, 2022

Get guidance with your projects on intellectual property. Access straightforward explanations for some of the questions about intellectual property.

Can I use other people’s texts, music or photographs?

You can license other people’s writings, music, and photos as long as they come from a good source. You must use the copies on your own devices. However, it is not legal to spread or publish such documents.

Private copy levy

For example, you can make a CD or DVD copy as long as it is just for your own private use. Manufacturers and exporters are charged on these personal copies through a separate private copy charge. Customers spend this tax in the selling value.

The writers/authors, performers, and producers are the main beneficiaries of the private copy charge.

Downloading from unknown sources is not permitted.

Downloading information from unauthorised sources that is copyright marked is unlawful. This still holds true even if a work is downloaded just for personal use. The most unlawful sources are websites. The private copy levy does not apply to copies made from unlawful sources because doing so is against the law.

copying protections

It is lawful for authors to add copy protection to their works. This type of security prevents people from copying things like CDs and DVDs. Copying something secured this way is prohibited, not even for private use.

The copying of computer programs

The computer software that is copyright secured, such as software and games, is not subject to the laws controlling private copies. Copying a computer programme is prohibited, according to this.

Does your pc employ a duplicate of a software programme? This is acceptable as long as you paid for the original programme or got it in another legal way. The activity, in this case, has been approved. Making a backup copy is also legal.

Open source software

Software that has open access to its source code is considered to as open source software. The source code is open for everyone to view and edit. If the source code is available via the internet or when you buy the software, you can get it.

Most commercial software is private (closed source) and covered by copyright laws. The user and other parties are not allowed to make any changes because the source code is not made public.

How can I apply for a patent?

The Netherlands Patent Office should receive your application if you want to patent a technique, an invention, or a product. A patent is also known as an “octrooi” in Dutch. Your innovation, product, or technique will be secured by a patent for 20 years.

Application for a patent

The Netherlands Patent Office, a department of the Netherlands Enterprise Agency, is where you can submit your application ( You can apply in either English or Dutch. If you decide later to apply for a European patent or another patent for which the process is in English, applying in English can save you translation charges. The conclusions, therefore, must be written in Dutch.

Cost of patent application

A patent application includes a fee. There is a one-time application fee in the Netherlands: €80 for online applications and €120 for written applications. Secondly, you must pay for a required uniqueness search. A worldwide search costs €794, while a national search costs €100.

If you want to renew the patent after the fourth year, you must also pay a charge. Each year, the cost gets higher.

Before submitting a patent application, carefully examine how you will recover the expenditures. The cost of a patent depends on how many nations it is granted to and how long you want it to be valid.

Patents apply for a maximum of 20 years

Your creation is secured by a patent for up to 20 years. During this time, competitors cannot use the invention for profit or copy it. You can now reclaim the money you spent on its development. The government supports businesses to keep innovating by applying for a patent.

European or unitary patent

You have many options when requesting a patent in another European nation:

  • A European patent
    If you have a European patent, you can select the nations where you want to register it. A total of 38 nations, including the EU member states, Turkey, Norway, and Switzerland, permit you to do this.
  • A unitary patent (from late 2017)
    In the case of a single patent, the Netherlands and most other EU nations require only one. However, Spain and Croatia will still need unique patents.

What is the private copy levy?

The private copy levy helps pay for the losses writers and artists suffer due to other people making copies of their music and films for personal use. The payment is made through a fee on blank CDs, DVDs, and other electronic devices with storage capacity.

When is an artist eligible for resale right protection?

Artists with resell rights are eligible for part of the proceeds from selling their works. The artist receives a portion of the sale price as a resell profit each time an art market expert sells one of their works. The payment will vary depending on how much the art is sold for, although it cannot go above €12,000.

Conditions of eligibility for resale royalties

Not every sale of an artwork involves the payment of resale royalties. The conditions are essential:

A painting or sculpture are example of original works in the graphic or visual arts that may be sold.

The buyer, seller, or broker must be an expert in the art market.

At least €3,000 must be paid in the sale.

On the website of the copyright organisation Pictoright, you can find a summary of all the terms associated with resale royalties.

Duration of the resale right

Your right to resell cannot be given to another person. Your surviving family members or other heirs may receive the resale right in the event of your death. The resale right of an artist expires 70 years after death.

No resale royalties

No resale royalties are collected if the artwork is rented, borrowed, traded, or donated. Reselling royalties are also not due on sales made to private parties.

When is my company or organisation required to pay reproduction fees?

Copyright protections exist for publications, including books, newspapers, and periodicals. The law establishes a reproduction fee on businesses, governments, and educational institutions that create copies of certain publications. The Reprographic Reproduction Rights Foundation receives a set annual charge in exchange for this service.

Making physical or digital copies of publications is legal for businesses and organisations. For internal usage, this could appear as prints, emails, scans, or photocopies.

The authors, photographers, and publishers who create these publications are entitled to damages. The Reprographic Reproduction Rights Foundation helps ensure that authors and publishers are paid when a business or organisation copies a copyrighted work.

Payment of reproduction fees

The Reprographic Reproduction Rights Foundation charges all businesses and organisations for reproduction costs. The foundation then divides the funds to owners of the copyright each year.

No reproduction fees payable in some cases

  • The following situations do not require payment of reproduction fees: when an employee produces a copy for personal use; when it has been agreed that the reproduction charge will be paid directly to the creator of a work; where the creator has surrendered their rights to a reproduction fee.

How can I protect my intellectual property rights?

Law establishes the rights of intellectual property owners. You should take action to stop someone from violating your rights to a protected concept or design if they do.

Infringements of intellectual property rights (IPRs)

The courts can determine if your IPRs have been violated if you learn that someone else is using (or has used) your innovation without your permission, i.e. without a patent licence.

Taking steps to curb infringements of intellectual property rights

You should take action to stop someone from violating your intellectual property rights if they do so. You might start by getting in touch with the person personally and attempting an acceptable compromise. You’ll need to take the matter to court if these efforts are unsuccessful. For instance, in interim injunction proceedings, you can ask the court to prohibit the infringement (kort geding). Or you can request that the stolen products be destroyed or recalled. A portion of the profits or access to data on the buyers are two other options.

Enforcement of intellectual property rights

  • IPR owners may use civil court actions to enforce their rights. For example, the Dutch Code of Civil Procedure and EU Directive 2004/48/EC on the protection of intellectual property rights both have rules to this purpose. Regulations for IPR enforcement are outlined in the statute. Establishing temporary order procedures, requesting the attachment or sale of items, or requesting income garnishment are all options.

Customs checks and IPRs

Do you think your intellectual property rights are being violated outside the EU or Netherlands’ external borders? If so, you can request that the customs office take appropriate action. This is possible only if the products are under the customs administration’s observation or control.

The customs administration may refuse to permit the products to cross the border even if it grants your request and finds them during a check. The opportunity to determine if your rights are being violated will present itself. If so, you can do anything to stop this violation.

Enforcement of IPRs under criminal law

In the Netherlands, civil law is generally used to resolve disputes between parties. Criminal law is only used as a last resort for enforcement. IPRs may be enforced under criminal law; for example, if there is a public health danger, there is widespread piracy and counterfeiting, or there is evidence that criminal organisations are involved.

The public Prosecution Service and Financial Information and Investigation Service are in charge of carrying out the criminal law’s regulation (FIOD).

How do I apply for a European patent?

You can apply to the European Patent Office (EPO) for a European patent to protect your innovative product or procedure within the European Union (EU). A European patent is a collection of individual country patents.

Applying for a patent in individual EU countries

When requesting a European patent, you can list the nations where you wish your invention to be protected. On the Netherlands Enterprise Agency website, you may find further details about submitting a patent application in EU nations (

Unitary patent: one procedure for almost EU-wide protection

The “universal impact” option is available when requesting a European patent. As a result, you won’t need to specify which nations you want a patent to be protected in. There will only be a requirement for separate patents in Croatia and Spain. On the EPO website, you may learn more about unitary patents.

Unitary patent costs less.

It might cost at least €20,000 to submit a patent application in each EU nation. Less money—roughly €6,000—will be required to apply for a unitary patent. This will be possible in part because the application process will be streamlined. You won’t need to create a unitary patent in many languages. The only required languages are English, French, or German.

You won’t even need to think about the various laws in other nations. Businesses will have less administrative work to do as a result.

Unified Patent Court

After the universal patent is adopted, there will be a significant leading Uniform Patent Court in the EU. With parts in Munich and London, it will have Paris as its workplace. The participating nations may also create regional divisions. In the Netherlands, the regional office will be in The Hague.

Cases involving unitary patents and “typical” European patents will be heard by the Unified Patent Court. To defend your patent, you won’t need to file legal actions in each of the several national courts anymore.

What are the criteria for patenting my invention?

With a patent, you can protect your creation. You can use a patent to stop someone from stealing, selling, or importing your idea.

What is a patent?

A patent is the sole intellectual property right to an invention of a technological product or procedure.

Protection of an invention

Patents give ideas protection. A patent prevents others from making, using, reselling, renting out, supplying, importing, stocking, or offering your vision to someone else.

2,500 to 3,000 applications are submitted to the Netherlands Patent Office annually. Patented inventions include the multipurpose stroller with adjustable angles, the Senz stormproof umbrella, the Senseo coffeemaker, the clap skate, and Dutch crispbreads (beschuit) with indentations.

Patent applications: the three criteria

Three conditions must be met by patent applications:

  • Novelty
    This means that previous to the date of the application, your innovation must not have been revealed to the public, not even by yourself.
  • Inventive step
    You must therefore come up with a creative solution for your product or method. A manufacturer could not come up with a solution on their own. Consider an alternative attachment strategy as an example. Swing tube connections could be put instead of bonding. This may represent a new way to make swings. It is, however, too simple of a fix for someone involved in their production to be considered a creative move.
  • Industrial Applicability
    This requirement suggests that the new invention must be able to be produced in reality. In other words, a new playing card more manageable than current cards can be patented. A new card game, however, cannot be the subject of a patent.
  • The Patents Act of 1995 outlines these guidelines.

Patents Database

The invention will be made available to the public in the patent databases and registers if the Netherlands Patent Office issues the patent. Businesses can use these to check for existing patents on technologies they seek to create. Additionally, they can identify which of their rivals are presently engaged in studying and developing a specific technology.

Patents outside the Netherlands

National rights include patents. You might also want to apply for a patent that is applicable in Europe or the entire world.

Applying for patent protection in the EU with a single application

A single patent will be valid in the Netherlands and the rest of the EU starting in 2017. Separate patents will only be necessary for Spain and Croatia after this “unitary patent” becomes effective.

Getting a patent revoked

A patent can be cancelled if someone feels that your invention does not match the requirements for one. The Hague district court will hear these cases. If your patent does meet the needs, this court must decide whether to cancel it or maintain it.

Patent licence for the use of an invention

The ability to create, sell, or use your patented product or procedure is lawful. By issuing a patent licence, patent owners can provide such rights.

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