3 Rights a Trade Mark Gives You
A trade mark is one excellent way to protect your business’ intellectual property (IP). In addition, it provides a multitude of legal and marketing benefits that you can leverage to aid the growth of your business. A trade mark gives you many exclusive rights over your trade mark. While it is not always necessary to register your trade mark, having your trade mark registered can make it easier for you to enjoy these exclusive benefits. To help you better understand the importance of trade marks, this article will take you through three exclusive rights a trade mark gives you.
1. Use of Your Trade Mark
A trade mark registered with IP Australia will give you exclusive use of your trade mark nationwide, giving you the ability to have complete control over your trade mark and its use. This is particularly important when designing your business’ marketing strategies and planning your growth. With this exclusive use, you will be able to distinguish your brand from others, improving your brand’s reputation and bringing value to your business over time.
Having a registered trade mark in Australia can also help you to take your business overseas and use your trade mark on an international scale. This is because applying for international trade mark registration is much easier when you already have a trade mark registered in Australia.
2. Commercialisation of Your Trade Mark
Registering your trade mark gives you the right to commercialise your trade mark. This includes the rights to licence your trade mark. Licencing your trade mark is an excellent way to retain ownership over your trade mark without giving up your trade mark rights.
As a trade mark owner, you will be able to use your power as the licensor to create licencing agreements. With such an arrangement, third parties (known as the ‘licensee’) are granted rights to use your trade mark. These rights are usually granted within very specified parameters, such as limited geographical boundaries.
If your business is a franchise, you will not be able to operate without licencing agreements. This is because licencing agreements form the foundation of franchises, with the primary incentive of purchasing a franchise being the use of the business’ IP, including trade marks.
3. Protection Over Your Trade Mark
Having a registered trade mark also gives you protection over your trade mark. This includes protection from unauthorised use of your trade mark and prevents others from registering a trade mark that is deceptively similar to yours.
Once you have trade mark registration, you will be able to evidence ownership of your trade mark to take enforcement measures.
For example, you may see a competitor business using your trade mark or a trade mark similar to yours, either with or without knowledge. In this case, having a registered trade mark means you can use your trade mark registration to send a cease and desist letter requesting the competitor company to stop using your trade mark. If the company ignores your request, you will be able to take the matter to court and use your trade mark registration as evidence that the trade mark in dispute is yours.
Additionally, your trade mark registration will enable you to prevent new trade marks that are similar or deceptively similar to yours from being registered. When IP Australia advertise proposed trade mark applications, you will have the power to dispute the registration of the proposed trade mark. If you do not have a registered trade mark, you will find it difficult to demonstrate that the proposed trade mark infringes on your business.
A registered trade mark is an excellent way to protect your business’ brand assets. In turn, this can help facilitate business growth. Some of the rights that a trade mark gives you include the right to:
- use your trade mark to the exclusion of others;
- commercialise your trade mark; and
- enforce your trade mark rights.
Frequently Asked Questions
While it is not a legal requirement to register your trade mark, having a registered trade mark will give you more rights than an unregistered trade mark. The primary purpose of trade marks is having the exclusive rights to its use and having your trade mark registered can make this much easier.
Having a trade mark for your brand assets gives you a number of exclusive rights. This includes the rights to use your trade mark, commercialise it and protect your trade mark through enforcing your rights.