In order to trade mark a brand, the first step is to understand what marks may be registrable, the appropriate classes of goods and services you should choose and what jurisdictions you want to file in. Where there is a choice of routes to protection we can advise on the appropriate strategy that best meets your business objectives. We can also assist with registering any necessary domain names to support your brand.
The second step is to carry out clearance searches. These searches are an important step in the process and should be completed before launching a new brand or an existing one into a new jurisdiction. You need to establish whether the same or similar marks already exist and be aware of any conflicting prior rights that could stop you from registering and using your brand. This approach also reduces the risk of unintentionally infringing an existing right or having to rebrand products or services after a costly infringement action. If your searches are clear and you're good to go, our trade mark attorneys can complete and file your application with the UK Intellectual Property Office for you and for applications outside of the UK we use trusted local associates, selected on the basis of previous experience.
If there are issues with your proposed trade mark we will work with you to help you find a solution, whether that be developing strategies to deal with your possible infringement of an existing mark or supporting you in creating a new trade mark that works for your business and can be successfully registered. Once filed, we correspond on your behalf directly with the UK Intellectual Property Office and the EUIPO, and respond to any official objections raised against an application.
Read our Trade Mark law and practice guides for more details.
Managing your Trade Mark Portfolio
One of the most important considerations for your brand is how your trade mark portfolio is managed. A successful brand could have hundreds of different trade marks registered across multiple continents, all of which must be properly looked after if the wider business is to remain sufficiently protected. There are numerous challenges that all brands face when it comes to building and then managing their trade marks as a portfolio of assets. The key is to have a clear strategy with the wider short, medium and long-term goals of the brand(s) defined, this includes your specific goals regarding which products or services need protection and where. Whatever your trade mark portfolio size, we take the time to understand your business so we can we provide you with a portfolio management strategy that meets your objectives now and into the future as your business grows, working alongside you to implement it.
Unregistered Trade Mark Rights & Passing Off
As well as advising on registered trade mark rights, our trade mark experts can also advise you on all the issues surrounding unregistered rights and passing off. Where a party deliberately or unintentionally offers goods or services similar to yours, and you don’t have a registered trade mark, we can use the common law of passing off to establish a claim. Misrepresentation can damage your goodwill and cause both confusion and financial damage. Having a registered trade mark is always preferable but if you don’t, we are experienced in successfully dealing with these scenarios.