The term intellectual property denotes a bundle of exclusive rights, which, similarly to property rights, ensure erga omnes protection to creators of intellectual works, by way of recognizing and safeguarding their economic and moral rights pertaining to their act of innovation.
Intellectual property is divided into two categories: industrial property and copyright. Industrial property includes patents, trademarks, designs, plant variety, utility model and topography protection and the protection of geographical indications. Copyright includes literary and artistic works and the so called neighbouring rights, i.e. rights which protect artists or economic investors contributing to the dissemination of the works to the public (performers, producers of phonograms, broadcasters).
In order to obtain protection for industrial property, an official protection procedure has to be concluded as a result of which, if the application meets all the requirements laid down by the law, the creation is registered by the official body responsible for the management of industrial property rights. Copyright does not depend on official procedure. Copyright exists as soon as the work is created.
The Hungarian Intellectual Property Office, established in 1896, is the government body devoted to the protection of intellectual property.
The main national and international institutes dealing with intellectual property are the followings:
World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)
European Patent Office (EPO)
Office of Harmonization for the Internal Market (OHIM)
Community Plant Variety Office (CPVO)
World Trade Organization (WTO)
Hungarian Association for the Protection of Industrial Property and Copyright (MIE)