Many companies have found themselves embroiled in trademark disputes due to no real fault of their own. Even if your trademark is similar to an unregistered one, you may still find yourself in trouble. The main function of a trademark is to act as a badge of origin distinctive enough to stop two or more companies being confused for one another. Disputes usually begin when a company starts using a trademark that resembles another company’s too closely.

Is it deliberate?

Most companies who suspect their trademarks have been infringed assume that this has been done deliberately. Being involved in a trademark dispute can be costly for all concerned. It can mean product launches have to be delayed and goods need to be destroyed. One of the best ways to avoid a trademark dispute pre-emptively is to make your own intellectual property as distinctive as possible and make the chances of it resembling someone else’s as small as possible.

All UK- registered trademarks and international trademarks owned by companies that operate in the UK are on a register maintained by the UK Intellectual Property Office. An intellectual property lawyer or solicitor will be able to help you find out whether your trademark is distinctive enough to be used to advertise your goods and services.

Trademark image

Unregistered trademarks

If a company has been using a trademark but hasn’t registered it, they will need to prove that they have built up a reputation using the trademark and that the public associates the intellectual property with their service. This means one of the best ways to avoid being in a trademark dispute is to register your intellectual property. This will discourage others from infringing your trademark due to the legal costs they could be faced with.

Building a relationship with an intellectual property lawyer is a great way to avoid future disputes and what’s more is that they’ll be able to offer you in-depth advice on topics like copyright and trademark legislation. They will also be able to provide you with all of the information that you need on avoiding trademark disputes and expensive, lengthy legal battles.