Whatever type of business you run, and however big or small your company is, you need to ensure that your company name and other brand elements are protected. One of the best ways of doing that is to register a trademark. Along with a patent and copyright, a trademark is a legal term that describes your intellectual property. Patents and copyright are typically used to protect the commercial rights of the creators or inventors of creative works, whereas the primary function of a trademark is to prevent your company from facing unfair competition.
When and How to Register a Trademark
You should register a trademark as soon as possible to ensure your company is protected. The majority of business owners begin exploring trademarks before they even form their businesses. In addition to the benefit of having protection from the offset, if you choose to amend your company name later on, it can result in costly legal fees. You can find detailed information about registering trademarks at the United States Patent and Trademark Office’s website. However, it can be a lengthy process to research whether another company has a registered trademark like yours before you even begin the process of registering your trademark. Therefore, many companies opt to go with reputable trademark registration services like Nominus that search and register your trademark for you and provide you with personalized customer support. Now, let us take a closer look at the key reasons why you should register a trademark for your business.
A Trademark Diminishes Your Burden of Proof
If another company copies or infringes upon your company name and you do not have a registered trademark, the burden of proof is on you. Without legal protection, it can be very difficult to prove that someone has copied or infringed your name. It can also be very costly to try to prove it. You can avoid the hassle of taking someone to court and the costs that come with the process by simply registering your trademark from day one.
A Trademark Protects You Against Infringement
By registering your trademark, you make sure it is not similar to any other registered trademarks. That means if you accidentally infringe on someone else’s name or trademark, you will not have to pay legal fines, fees, and damages, because you will have legal proof that you did not intend to infringe upon another’s trademark. If you do not have a registered trademark and you do infringe on someone else’s intellectual property, it cannot only result in large legal costs. It can also damage your entire business’s reputation due to customers’ ensuing confusion over your company’s identity or products.
Your Business Appears More Reputable with a Registered Trademark Symbol
By getting a trademark, you get to use the recognized registered trademark symbol: ®. By having that federally-registered symbol as part of your company name, it will add to the prestige of your business and show customers that you run a reputable and trustworthy company, thus potentially increasing your sales.
You Could Have to Start Your Branding from Scratch
If you do not register your trademark and later find out that another company is using a very similar name, you will have to change your company name. That means you will have to change your business cards, your storefront signs, your advertising, and so on. The costs will soon mount up, and without a strong brand behind you, you will essentially be beginning your branding and marketing from scratch.
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