It’s a common misconception that only ‘big’ companies own trade marks and that unless you are the likes of Coca-Cola or Apple, there is just no point trying to protect your brand name or logo in this way.
BUT consider how you would feel if another company started trading under the same name as you? How upset would you be if your potential customers bought products or services from them instead of buying from you?
Without a trade mark registration it could be very difficult to stop someone else from using your brand name or logo which could be hugely detrimental to your business.
At The Big Ideas Legal Company we are passionate about protecting the hard work you have put into growing your brand, regardless of the size of your company.
We have therefore launched a series of highly cost-effective Brand Protection Packages so that even on a tight budget, you can protect the hard work you have invested in your brand. Click here to find out more details of our various Packages and if you have any questions, please get in touch.
If you are in the process of choosing a new brand name, product name or strapline, make sure you factor in a legal clearance check BEFORE you launch.
Without one, you are leaving your company exposed to potentially costly consequences.
Whereas in the past, a company trading under a name in Surrey for example was unlikely to become aware of another company trading under the same name in Yorkshire, this is not so now that almost all businesses have some form of internet presence.
This makes it MUCH easier for other companies to notice if you are using their name….with potentially devastating effects on your business.
Here are 5 reasons why a legal clearance check should always form part of your pre-launch checklist:
- Earlier Trade Marks. A legal clearance check is the ONLY way to determine whether your chosen name is free to use and will not be infringing someone else’s earlier registered trade mark(s).
- Legal Action. If you use the same or even just a SIMILAR name to someone else’s registered trade mark in relation to the same/similar products or services, they may decide to take legal action against you. This could result in you not only having to stop using your name, but also having to pay compensation for infringing their rights. This could be a huge expense compared to the modest cost of carrying out a legal clearance check.
- Re-Branding Costs. Clearance checks are a small expense compared with the cost of re-branding if you discover that that your name is not available. If the results of the check are negative you can change your name BEFORE you incur stationery, packaging and marketing costs which may otherwise be wasted.
- Effect on your Business. Aside from the costs involved with re-branding, if you find your name is not available after you have begun trading it may have a detrimental effect on your business. If you have to cease trading under your existing name you could lose customers used to searching for you under a particular name. Let alone all the time and energy that you would have to divert from your usual business activities to carry out the re-branding exercise.
- Trade Mark Potential. A legal clearance check will also give you a good idea of whether your chosen name could be registered as a trade mark in the countries in which you are trading. A registered trade mark is a useful asset which can not only help you to prevent others using your name, but it may also be sold, assigned, licensed or franchised for considerable value in the future.
The Big Ideas Legal Company has a proven track record of many years’ experience of carrying out legal clearance checks for clients of all shapes and sizes across many different business sectors.
Contact us on 07551 585783 or firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule your clearance check today.
Hello and Happy New Year!
So what are your New Year’s Resolutions?
One of the questions I am asked time and time again is if I have already registered my name with Companies House, then is my name protected from copying by others? Unfortunately this is NOT necessarily the case and you can find out why here.
Without a doubt, the best way to protect your brand name or logo is by registering it as a trade mark. If you want to find out more about why you should take this crucial step to protect your name and business click here.
So, if you make one New Year’s Resolution in 2014…then make sure it’s to protect the result of all your hard work, namely your brand.
If you would like to arrange a FREE consultation to discuss protecting your brand then please call us on 07551 585783 or email email@example.com.
The use of a good brand name can literally make or break your business but have you checked to see whether someone else is using it in your industry already?
Most businesses will spend some time brainstorming a new brand name and researching their target market to assess its likely success. Your name is the first thing a customer sees or uses to contact your company and often determines their attitude towards your business or products, so it is important to get it right from the outset.
But what many businesses fail to do is to ascertain the trade mark implications of adopting a particular name, which could prove very costly. If another company has already registered the same, or even just a similar name to yours for the same or similar products or services, they could prevent you from using your chosen brand name. This could potentially cost thousands of pounds in re-branding if you have to re-print stationery, packaging or change your website domain name. In a worst-case scenario, you could have to pay compensation for using someone else’s trade mark.
Even if you are a start-up with limited resources, it is always advisable to instruct a trade mark professional to carry out a search of the trade mark registers in the countries that you plan to trade in. They can highlight any obstacles and make suggestions as to how to overcome them. Furthermore, if you decide to protect your brand name by filing a trade mark, the Trade Marks Registry does not refund fees even if your trade mark is unsuccessful so it therefore makes financial sense to conduct a search before submitting an application.
the big ideas legal company has had many years’ experience of conducting affordable trade mark searches for clients across all business sectors and in many countries worldwide. If you would like us to check to see whether your chosen name is available then please get in touch.
Regardless of the size of your business, and however big you become, your company name and brand will be one of your most valuable assets.
Your name and brand represents your business. You spend a lot of time and money designing your name and logo, building goodwill with your customers and suppliers, but…
- Have you started to trade using a name or brand identity that is the same or similar to someone else?
- What if someone else starts to trade using a similar name?
- What if you want to franchise or sell your business in the future – how can you secure the most value from your brand?
You need to protect your investment and put yourself in the best position to leverage its value.
The most effective way to protect your name or brand is to register it as a trade mark. This:
- helps you to confirm the uniqueness of your name/brand;
- makes it much easier to stop someone copying or trading off your name/brand;
- allows you to use the ® logo which acts as a deterrent to third parties; and
- will make it easier to sell, franchise or license when your business achieves its full potential.
We can help you by:
- filing trade marks on your behalf in the UK, Europe and Internationally depending on the size of your business.
- providing “clearance checks” to see whether your chosen name is available before you go ahead with a new launch which could save you the cost of re-branding if your name has already been taken.
- advising on how to design your name/brand to best secure a trade mark registration.
- helping deal with disputes and challenges to your trade mark and/or name/brand.
If you would like to arrange a free initial discussion on any aspect of registering your trade mark then please contact us.
Anyone with a brand name or logo which they are using ‘as a trade mark’ is permitted to use the ™ symbol after it to indicate that it is being used as a trade mark.
The key though is that in order to gain any value from doing so, you need to ensure that you are using it ‘as a trade mark’ as opposed to merely descriptively. This means highlighting it from the surrounding text such as by putting it in bold or capital letters, and using it as an adjective rather than as a noun.
The ‘stronger’ symbol to use after your brand name is the ® symbol which puts whoever reads it on notice that your name is a registered trade mark. By registering a trade mark, it makes it much quicker and cheaper to bring legal action against someone else seeking to use an identical or similar name.
In fact, the use of the ® symbol alone can act as a deterrent against others considering using a similar name to yours.
If you would like to arrange a free discussion about registering your trade mark then please contact us on 07551 585783.
Whether you are a small, medium or large company your brand name and/or company logo may be one of your most valuable assets.
Just because you have registered your company name at Companies House does not mean it cannot be challenged by someone with a similar name.
The most effective way to protect your company brand name and/or logo is to register it as a trade mark for a number of reasons:
a registered trade mark makes it much easier and cheaper to bring action against a third party who copies or tries to trade off your name/brand.
a trade mark is an asset which could potentially be sold, assigned, franchised or licensed for considerable value in the future.
if you have a registered trade mark you are entitled to use the ® symbol which can itself act as a deterrent to others seeking to use a similar name/logo to you.
Trade marks last 10 years and can be renewed indefinitely for successive 10 year periods thereafter. So even though the cost of registering a trade mark may seem like an unnecessary expense, you should consider it a long term investment.
And the advantages it brings if someone else were to try to trade using your brand name are invaluable.
If you would like to arrange a free consultation to discuss the protection of your brand name and logo, then please contact us.