One of the key reasons your consumers or clients purchase from you is the goodwill associated with your trading names and brands.
The more crucial it is to preserve your intellectual property, the more valuable your names and trademarks are. To begin with, be sure that your trading name is secured. This is specifically valid if you provide a distributor or agent permission to use it, in which case they will be reselling your branded products and services. You can be requested to affirm that your trading names are protected if you're starting a joint venture or bringing in venture money.
Utilize your brands and business name.
Utilizing a name or brand is the most effective strategy to protect it. The more people who link a name to your brand and/or your products and services, the more the courts will acknowledge your ownership of such rights and take appropriate legal action against violators.
Register your intellectual property assets like trademarks and copyright.
Think about registering your names and brands to protect them. For instance, you can apply to register your name or brand as a US trademark at the USPTO if it distinguishes your goods or services from those of other firms. Your name or brand can be words, logos, pictures, letters, forms, sounds, smells, or any combination of these. As a result, the courts will quickly and easily enforce your monopoly on using your trade mark in respect to the products and services you identify in your application.
If it isn't already a company name, you could also register it as a domain name and company name like an LLC or corporation.
Be on the lookout for intellectual property theft.
Think about utilizing a "watching" service to keep an eye out for infringers on the Trademark Registry, Amazon, and several domain name registries. You are alerted as soon as a name with the same or a similar meaning is requested or registered, allowing you to take appropriate action.
Additionally, monitor informally by using search engines to look for instances of the same or similar names on the internet, keeping an eye on the Yellow Pages and the trade press, and hearing rumors from clients, partners in business, suppliers, and others.
Take legal action against violators
Take prompt, forceful action against violators. The more you wait, the more the infringement is assumed to have been accepted.
You will frequently have a number of legal options to pursue the infringer in the same dispute. Your options include:
- Bring them before the court for 'passing off' and violating your registered trade mark.
- Object to their application for a trademark.
- Dispute the registration of a new company with a name that is identical to one you have already registered for a limited company.
- Whether or whether you have registered the name as a limited company name, you should object to the Company Names Tribunal against the registration of the same or a similar name in that capacity. This is due to the fact that, in accordance with name adjudication rules, it is either the same as a name in which you have goodwill or is sufficiently similar to your name to be likely to mislead by implying a relationship between the firm and you.
If you trade or are represented in other nations, you might need to take action there.
Choose your course of action.
You'll need a plan, but exercise caution. It is quite conceivable to win in one forum but lose in another because different criteria will be used in each one. Additionally, a variety of remedies are accessible, and each set of proceedings has a unique timeline. While aggressively pursuing every remedy may be justified, it also runs the risk of complicating the situation and encouraging the infringer.
With the help of an advisor, thoroughly consider your plan to:
- Find out all of your legal alternatives right away.
- Determine the results you desire.
- Choose the alternatives that will help you attain them.
- To give yourself the best possibility of reaching your goals, schedule each one and coordinate it.
Make the IP dispute work in your favor
Typically, you seek to halt the offender and receive payment. Another option is to grant the infringement a license to use your name lawfully in exchange for a fee, turning the legal conflict into a source of income for you. Consider the infringer as a potential collaborator in any disagreement rather than just the "other side."