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How to make a Cease and desist letter for IP infringement

A cease and desist letter is a letter that formally requests someone to cease infringing upon your intellectual property rights, with a threat of legal action in case of failure to comply.

Stop someone using your intellectual property without permission by sending this cease and desist letter. Receiving a professional, succinct cease and desist is often enough to stop an offending party from infringing on your intellectual property rights. If not, you will have proof that you tried before resorting to the legal system. This letter covers details of the breach and an order to cease infringing action.

Use this cease and desist letter:

  • when you are the owner of intellectual property rights which have been infringed
  • when you have shared confidential information which has been unlawfully disclosed
  • to inform the person in breach of your identity, your rights and intention to enforce them

This cease and desist letter covers:

  • the rights owned, with a choice of:
    • copyright
    • trade mark
    • patent
    • design right
    • confidential information
  • details of the breach
  • order to cease infringing action
  • order to deliver up or destroy all infringing materials
  • undertaking to stop infringing action in future
  • offer of licence (alternative remedy for copyright)
  • threat of further legal action

A carefully written cease and desist letter is a very powerful tool in the enforcement of intellectual property protection. You will need a cease and desist letter when you want the recipient to stop the infringement before resorting to legal action. It is an efficient warning that offers the infringer the option to solve the problem out of court.

Providing the recipient with a deadline for ceasing the infringing action gives more weight to your letter and compels the recipient to react quickly. The deadline should remain reasonable, eg. fifteen working days for a copyright infringement.

Within the date specified in the letter, the recipient must stop any infringing behaviour and must undertake the following actions:

  • for copyright infringement: credit the copyright holder in the infringing work and/or pay the copyright holder a fee for use of the work
  • for trade mark infringement: deliver for destruction all materials including the trade mark, and withdraw any application for the registration of trade mark
  • for design and patent infringement: try to recover all stocks of infringing items from purchasers and deliver them up for destruction

Ask a lawyer if:

  • you want a cease and desist letter which does not relate to intellectual property
  • the recipient does not respond to this letter

Other names for Cease and desist letter for IP infringement

Cease and desist trade mark infringement letter.