A Brief Guide To Registering Trade Marks

Author:Deirdre Kilroy

In this guide we explain:

what a trade mark is and what it is used for; what the key elements of a trade mark are; why trade marks are registered; the trade mark registration process; and how Matheson's trade mark services can assist your business. 1. What is a Trade Mark?

A trade mark is a 'badge of origin' that informs the public that a particular business is the commercial source of products or services that the trade mark is affixed to. A trade mark gives your business a unique, protectable brand which is readily identifiable by consumers. A trade mark has several functions: it embodies the brand of a business' product and/or service, carrying value and goodwill; it is used in advertising and for consumer protection; and it distinguishes a business' goods and services from those of its competitors. Trade marks can be words, numbers, slogans logos, colours, shapes, sounds, motion marks, multimedia and holograms. 2. Some Basic Rules when Choosing a New Trade Mark

A trade mark must be distinctive. A trade mark can be made up of words, logos, taglines, pictures, colours, smells or a mixture of any of these. It can be anything that can be depicted graphically. A trade mark must not be descriptive of the goods or services for which it is being registered. A trade mark term must not be generic and commonly used in the relevant trade. A trade mark must not be deceptive. A trade mark cannot be a common surname or geographical name. A trade mark must not be identical to or confusingly similar with any earlier registered mark. For this reason before applying for a trade mark it is advisable to search the existing trade marks on the registers. In some cases, use of a mark for several years may make that mark registrable, even if it was not registrable when new. 3. Why Consider Registering a Trade Mark?

Customer loyalty and brand recognition are key assets that most businesses invest in. When you register a trade mark you acquire a potentially perpetual exclusive right to use of your trade mark in connection with the goods or services for which it is registered. You also secure the right to prevent others from using it. A registered trade mark is an asset of the business which can be sold, licensed and used as security, just like any other piece of valuable property.

  1. I have Registered a Company Name or Business Name for my Brand, why do I need a Registered Trade Mark?

    The only way to ensure that you have exclusive...

To continue reading