- What is a trade mark?
This is a sign or a symbol that allows your services or your products to be identified as yours and not your competitor’s. You can apply for a trademark which will protect your sign or symbol from anyone else using it without your permission.
- Do I have to get trade mark protection for my product name or symbol?
No you don’t but it makes protection much easier. If you don’t register your mark then you need to rely on an unregistered trade mark or other forms of legal protection if a competitor were to brand themselves in a very similar way to you. This can prove very complicated and expensive. Registering a trade mark, on the other hand, is actually relatively cheap and simple and something MidTECH can assist with.
However, if you do decide not to register your mark then you can still use it as an unregistered trade mark and place a small 'TM' next to the mark.
If you do register it and the application is successful then you will be able to place the registered trade mark symbol next to your mark - ®
- What examples are there of trade marks?
Many common product or service names are trade marks. “Coca Cola®”, “Apple®” and “Mcdonalds®” are some of the most common (note the “®” showing they are registered marks) . All of these examples have logos or images associated with them and they form part of the trade mark too. As these have been registered with the Intellectual Property Office you cannot use these symbols and words when selling similar products or services.