A Trademark is a name or symbol, like logos and brand names that help to distinguish the goods and services of different persons. It must be capable of distinguishing your goods and services from those of your competitors. It can be words, logos or a combination of both. A Trademark is any mark that distinguishes a product or service provided by one company from products or services provided by others. A Trademark enables customers to easily recognize and identify your goods and/or services in the marketplace. Trademarks exist at common law by virtue of acquiring goodwill from extensive use. However, a registered Trademark takes precedence over common law Trademarks, and registration of a Trademark, whether used or proposed to be used, is recommended. You don’t need to have commenced use of a Trademark in order to file an application for it. So long as you intend to use the Trademark in future, it is advisable to commence an application immediately under “Proposed Use”. Otherwise someone else can file a similar application ahead of you and you will be precluded from applying for or using it when you finally desire to commence using it.
A Trademark allows you to prevent others from using a mark, in the country in which the Trademark is registered, in a manner that would be likely to be confusing with the registered Trademark. In Canada, a registered Trademark is valid for 15 years from the date of the registration. Thereafter it may be renewed. In the United States, a registered Trademark is valid for 10 years from the registration date, and may be renewed thereafter.
A Trademark is not international in range. As such, if registered in Canada it will not be protected in another country. The Trademark must be separately registered in each country where it is to be used and protected. Trademarks have more value than to just be used to associate a business name with the services it provides. The true value of a Trademark is the right to establish an ownership of said Trademark. This prevents anyone else from acquiring it. Accordingly, the owner of a Trademark is precluded from paying a licensing fee to someone else for the purpose of using that Trademark. Moreover, the owner of a Trademark cannot encounter a request to discontinue the use of the Trademark, which applies to licensees. Similar to other types of Intellectual Property, before investing your money on a Trademark, it is advisable to run a search to determine its availability.
The creation and protection of your Trademark is of great importance to us at Opara Law PC. For more information, please contact us and book a consultation with one of our experienced Trademark agents. We will ensure that your Trademark is secured and suits your business needs accordingly.