To Trademark or Not to Trademark – What Should You Do?

When running a business, you have a lot to think about and you need to make sure everything is handled properly in order to succeed. One thing that many businesses don’t fully understand or take advantage of is trademark law. While everyone knows that the basic idea behind a trademark is to protect a logo, word, phrase, picture, or other item related to your business, most people don’t know when they should or shouldn’t get one. 

Trademark law is a fairly complex legal area because there are a lot of factors that can go into each case. It isn’t always as simple as filing for a trademark and suddenly your business and product names and logos are protected. This blog will provide a good introduction to this topic so you can determine whether or not you need to file for a trademark for your business. 

Understanding First in Use

The concept of “first in use” is actually far more powerful than most people realize when it comes to trademark law. In most cases, the courts are going to side with a company that has been using a particular logo, phrase, or other words when selling goods or services longer, even if another business has it trademarked. This will come as a surprise to many people (especially trademark holders), but the fact is a trademark is really only intended to prevent others from copying your protected items going forward, not looking back.

 Are You Really Going to Fight it?

Getting a trademark is typically pretty easy and affordable, which is one strong argument for seeking one. The fact is, however, that if you have a trademark dispute with another party, it can get quite costly and time consuming to fight. There are some times when it is actually smarter to allow another party to violate your trademark if it isn’t causing any real harm.

Protection From the Unknown

Even if you aren’t planning on enforcing every possible violation of your trademark, however, there is a strong argument to be made for having the option to enforce if you choose. For example, if you fail to put a trademark in place and a direct competitor tries to steal your logo, you will have a much more difficult time stopping them from continuing to use it.

 What Should You Do?

In the end, each individual will need to weigh the pros and cons of seeking a trademark in each situation. This becomes especially important when you have a lot of trademarkable logos, words, or other items in your business, which can cause it to become expensive to file for them all. One of the best things you can do is to speak with an experienced trademark attorney so you can have your exact situation evaluated properly. Contact us today to see how we can help you protect your intellectual property. 

The following two tabs change content below.

Dahl Law Group

At Dahl Law Group, we’re not just a law firm. We’re your trusted advisor for your business and family from beginning to end. As your family and business grow, we will be there by your side. Our passion is providing you with peace of mind and protection through personalized estate and business planning.

Latest posts by Dahl Law Group (see all)