Why registering and defending a trademark is so important:
The trademark of a company or a product functions as an identifier, its business card. When thinking of brands like Coca Cola or Mercedes Benz it quickly becomes clear how much value a trademark can hold. Constituting part of the goodwill of a company a trademark can be activated in the balance sheet as its own intangible company asset.As with any important asset such value does not arise by itself but rather must be built up and protected from loss in value. Besides a consistent application of a trademark (Corporate Identity) adressed by Marketing a trademark also requires legal administration and protection. The latter, at best, does not begin with the registration of a trademark but much sooner. With research and evaluation. In such context the relevant scope with regards to geography (national, EU-wide, international) and content (classification of Nizza) are to be assessed.
Besides the initial registration of a trademark with an appropriate scope its protection and defence are not to be neglected. A continuously increasing density of trademarks makes it difficult for the competition to find trademarks that do not collide with any other one worldwide. A confrontation with owners of older rights in a trademark who consider the new trademark as an infringement is just as common as a collision with newer marks. A trademark owner therefore must be alert to the existance of other trademarks of significant similarity which could cause trademark dilution. i.e. the weakening of the trademarks’ ability to identify and distiguish the goods or services. It might become necessary to admonish a competitor in case of collision and to legally enforce an action for injunction/elimination and/or claims for damage compensation respectively. Surveillance of the marketplace and reacting to collisions are part of a successful trademark management.
Ultimately, the strenght of a trademark’s protection will be put to the test in case of an infringement. If one conisideres costs alone when registering a trademark, without knowing advantages as well as disadvantages and thus disregards these, then many unforeseen issues can arise during an infringement lawsuit.
Protect yourself from unpleasant surprises. We will lead you towards a comprehensive and strong trademark strategy which can encompass one or many trademarks – national, collective or international. A future-proof trademark protection is more than filling out a form or an enquiry at trademark registers. We assess for you which type of trademark fits your business and whether specifications of geographic origin are permissible.