Many countries have systems that provide rights and protections for owners of property. In the US this it is known as IP law, and it is an important part of making sure exclusive use of an IP is held by its rightful owner.
Rights and protections for owners of intellectual property are based on federal patent, trademark and copyright laws and state trade secret laws. Within IP law there are patents, copyrights and trademarks. Patents protect inventions of tangible thins and copyrights protect various forms of artistic expression. Finally, trademarks protect the name or symbol that identifies the source of goods or services.
Patents, trademarks, and copyrights make up the legal foundation on which intellectual property can be protected by. As a result of this, a great deal of focus is put into drafting any documents and following the procedures necessary for obtaining this protection.