What To Do If Someone Is Using Your Trademark
If you find yourself in a situation where someone is using your registered trademark without your permission and effectively riding off the back of your business, you have the right to take legal action to prevent damage to your business. The sooner you act the better.
If you have not yet registered your trademark, then talk to Trademark Eagle as soon as possible. If you have been using a trademark without registering it, you may still be able to take steps to prevent the unauthorised use.
Applying to register a trademark is something that all business owners should do as soon as possible once they’ve decided on a brand name and logo. Registering a trademark helps to protect your brand, its goods and services, and it will be much easier to prevent someone else from using the same or a similar brand. A registered trademark gives you a statutory monopoly in the brand and the right to prevent unauthorised use of it.
Our team at Trademark Eagle offer services to assist you with trademark registration and we have a team of experienced attorneys who deal with trademark dispute work. If you’re not sure what to do if someone is using your trademark, we are here to help. Our experts are dedicated to helping business owners navigate trademark law and below we have answered some of the questions we’re frequently asked about trademark protection.
What protection does a trademark provide?
When you register a trademark, it will be easier and less costly to enforce your rights against someone who is using, or has adopted your trademark, or something similar without your permission. Without having a registered trademark, it can be more difficult and costly to prevent unauthorised people from copying your brand, although please talk to us if you have an issue. When someone uses a trademark without permission there is a risk of damage to your reputation, loss of revenue, association with unsavoury third parties and dilution of your brand.
It’s key to remember that you should regularly review any trademarks you’re using to ensure they are correctly protected, because trademarks evolve in terms of the style used and also the products you provide. Ensuring you have adequate protection is essential and we are happy to advise you.
You may find that if you have changed your brand, you need to register a new trademark to ensure you’re still adequately protected. Similarly, as your business grows and you start expanding into new industries or exporting to new countries, you should ensure that you are registering any new trademarks required and Trademark Eagle are here to advise you.
Don’t forget that your UK and EU trademarks will need to be renewed after 10 years too and that trademarks only remain registered for a set period of time. If you register a trademark through Trademark Eagle, we will notify you when your renewal is due.
How do you know if someone is using your trademark?
Sometimes, it may be brought to your attention by a customer or another business when they mistake someone else’s products for yours. Unfortunately, all too often people find out about unauthorised use of their trademarks when a complaint is made about the product, or service received that was not sold by them. It is very important to keep good records of all such complaints and to take action as a matter of urgency.
Conducting regular internet searches and keeping an eye on competitors is a good way of finding out if there is unauthorised use of your trademarks. Trade journals, advertisements, social media posts and monitoring competitors’ websites are actions you can take to keep up to speed with the brands in the same space as your business. If any are too close to yours then consider what action you should take to prevent damage to your business.
Monitoring for adoption of competing trademark applications
In addition to keeping abreast of the trademarks being used in your business arena, we highly recommend that you subscribe to a name-watching service once you have registered your trademark. This service is designed to monitor your trademark for you, it will check for trademark applications that are filed at the registries of interest to you, allowing you the opportunity to take action to prevent a damaging trademark being registered. A professional name-watching service can give you peace of mind that any new applications are identified, enabling you to take action straight away.
What should you do if someone is using your trademark?
As soon as you become aware of someone else using your trademark, you should seek legal advice. Get in touch with our experienced IP specialists at Trademark Eagle immediately and we will provide you with the professional guidance you need. It’s crucial to ensure that you act promptly when someone is using your trademark so that you can minimise damage to your business. There are a few different courses of action that you may be entitled to following trademark infringement and our experienced trademark attorneys can provide you with specialist advice and assistance.
Can you prevent other people from registering a similar trademark?
If you have an earlier valid trademark right, then you can take action to prevent the use and registration of a competing trademark application.
It is possible to make objections during the trademark registration process and if an application conflicts with your trademark interests, Trademark Eagle can help you. We are experts in resolving trademark disputes and we aim to settle issues efficiently for our clients, helping them to retain the exclusivity of their trademarks. The majority of disputes are settled through negotiation. We also file and prosecute formal opposition proceedings at the various registries as required. That said, the majority of disputes will settle amicably, and we rarely have an opposition that proceeds to the point where a Registry will issue a formal decision.
Whenever you are concerned about someone registering a similar trademark to yours, we can provide you with the assistance you need.
Protecting your trademark
Hopefully, the information above will be beneficial if you are wondering how you can protect your trademark from infringement. If you have any unanswered questions and you’d like to speak to our team, don’t hesitate to contact us at Trademark Eagle. We provide a useful trademark advice service and offer a straightforward and affordable service to business owners.
Our team has a combined experience exceeding 60 years in trademark law, so you can rely on us to help you protect your trademark. Feel free to explore the rest of our website today to find out more about how we can assist you with trademark applications, registrations, objections, dispute resolution and much more. If you have any questions or issues, then give us a call on 01223 208 624.