If you discover someone is using your business’s intellectual property, the first step to take is usually sending a cease and desist letter. However, this may not always be the right move.
Cornell Law School states that a cease and desist letter is merely a warning that you will take legal action if the person does not stop what he or she is doing. This may not work in every situation.
If you have already tried to discuss the situation with the other party and have had no luck, then a cease and desist letter may not be effective. You certainly can try it as the letter will serve as a warning that not stopping the behavior will result in a lawsuit.
You should only send a cease and desist letter if you are serious about taking further action. If you have no intentions of going to court, then the letter is simply an invalid threat. It could come back to haunt you should you later decide to seek legal help.
You also need to be careful with sending this type of letter. You want it to be professional and come from an attorney. Writing your own letter will not likely have an impact and it could be construed as an illegal threat.
When using a cease and desist letter, it is essential to do so correctly and within the law. You want this to serve as the first step in the process of stopping someone from using your intellectual property and not be a hollow attempt to scare the person.