Understanding trade marks

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Small business owners commonly find the legal side of their business intimidating and overwhelming, intellectual property is not an easy process to comprehend. It's important to protect your brand and property from infringement, however, there are numerous ways to trade mark a business.

What is a trade mark?

A trade mark is a way of identifying a unique product or service and distinguishes a business from other traders. People often confuse a trade mark as a registered business name, company or domain, which is not the case.
 

What can you register as a trade mark?

  • You can trade mark a word, name and/or tag line, like 'Apple,' 'Microsoft' or 'Just do it.'

  • And you can also register a logo or image, like how Disney uses mouse ears or Nike has a tick.
     

Why should I register a trade mark?

  • A trade mark secures exclusive rights and protection for your business name and logo.

  • A trade mark provides the tools to prevent competitors from registering similar marks making it difficult for businesses to imitate your brand.

  • As your brand becomes more established so does the value of your trade mark.

 

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What is the process?

  • Our legal team will take your application and register your ownership and protection with the Trade Marks Office. It takes around two months to be reviewed and accepted by the Office.

  • We then manage a number of administrative steps prior to registration, including advertising the application in the Journal of Trade Marks for a two month opposition period. The vast majority of accepted applications move through to registration.

  • When the Trade Marks Office issues a Certificate of Registration (around 7.5 months after you initially applied) it is effective from the date of application for the next 10 years!

 

How much does it all cost?

  • Registering each trade mark starts at $499 per class and asset, this will cover the entire legal process described above. We suggest you consider registering both your business name and your logo as trade marks. They're both assets of your business that you should consider securing today!

  • The only additional costs will occur if you want your trade mark to stretch across multiple classes of service, e.g. both clothing and catering services.
     

 

Chloe Hall