Trademarks – Own Your Brand

Richard Rimer

June 5, 2023

Trademarks are the type of intellectual property that covers brands. While a “trademark” and a “brand” are technically different things, trademark is as close as the law gets to describing a brand.

A company gains rights in a trademark simply by using any commercial symbol to identify the company’s goods or services being sold. The rights based on use are limited, but they can be enhanced by getting a registration for the trademark. A registration gives the owner the legal presumption that it has the rights to use the brand/ trademark.

Trademark rights are limited geographically. If you have not registered your trademark, your rights are limited to the market areas you serve. If you have registered your trademark, you are limited to the country(ies) in which the trademark is registered.

Nearly every company relies on trademarks. If nothing else, the name of the company is often used as a trademark, as are the names, logos and taglines used in connection with the goods and services the company sells.

Understanding what brands are important to your company is step one in reviewing your reliance on trademarks. You next would want to ensure that your company’s use of these items does not infringe on someone else’s rights. Finally, if available, you may want to register your rights in the brand to authenticate your rights in that brand.