Applying Under Trade Mark Class 25
IP Australia, the agency in charge of trade mark registration, divides trade marks into 45 separate classes of goods or services. These classes are helpful because they allow businesses to operate under the same name in different industries. After all, a construction company named ‘Big Red Bricks’ will never be mistaken for a clothing company by the same name, as they operate in entirely different markets. Trade mark class 25 is one of the most common trade mark classes for businesses. Class 25 includes clothing, accessories, and headgear. This article will explore some of the key considerations to think about if you are looking to trade mark under class 25.
Avoid Common Errors
Choosing a Good Class Instead of a Service Class
When deciding to proceed under class 25, make sure you pick between product and service carefully. Shirts, for example, are a type of clothing, so if you sell shirts, you are selling a good. A shirt printing company, on the other hand, is a service.
Choosing the Wrong Trade Mark Class
The class you select must represent the product or service. You should not base your selection on how you will market the good or the specific ingredients of the good, but rather the end product of the good. For example, if you sell shoes in a shoebox, you do not need to pick class 16 (paper goods) and class 25 (clothing, footwear and headgear). You only need to select class 25, as the end product is shoes, and the box is simply packaging.
Choosing Too Many Trade Mark Classes
When you apply for a trade mark, the inspector will look for any identical marks to yours. Therefore, if you select too many classes, particularly ones that do not apply to your product, you run the risk of getting rejected. Likewise, the trade mark examiner will deny your application if you select too many vague, unrelated classes.
Choosing Too Few Trade Mark Classes
On the other hand, if your trade mark does not completely cover how you plan to use it, you can face severe legal problems. For example, if you decide to omit class 25 when selling shoes, the trade mark will not protect your branding. Additionally, another business may come in and register a trade mark in the class you operate under, which could lead to severe difficulties for your business. You cannot add a class to a registered trade mark, and will have to begin an entirely new application if you omit a class.
Ensure You Apply Correctly
You should ask yourself some questions when determining what your main products or services are. If you supply goods, ask yourself what it is that people would buy from you. For example, if you are a sandals business, your main product is shoes. If you supply services, ask yourself what it is that people would hire you for.
Although there is an additional charge for each trade mark class on the application, this should not deter you from obtaining the most extensive trade mark protection possible. While it is possible to register a trade mark in a different class later, there is always the possibility that someone else may do so first and prevent you from doing so in the future. Starting a new application is also time-consuming and costly. Therefore, it is best to strive for full trade mark rights in the beginning.
Ensure Your Brand Is Distinctive
The owner of a trade mark has exclusive rights to use a name or emblem within a certain class of products or services. This means you can not file a trade mark that looks like one that already exists.
It is fine if a trade mark in a different class has the same name as yours, as this is unlikely to confuse customers. However, if you apply for a name that is too close to another registered mark in the same class, you can face problems. The most successful trade mark applications use made-up brand names or customised designs. Consider hiring a graphic designer or an artist to create a distinctive logo.
Before applying a trade mark, you can conduct a comprehensive search for related brand names and logos. If something similar comes up in your review, your application may not be successful, and you may want to consider selecting a different name or logo.
Before deciding to apply under trade mark class 25 for your clothing business, you should ensure that you have avoided common errors and that your logo cannot be confused with another company. Make sure class 25 is the correct class for your goods, and conduct a comprehensive search to ensure your trade mark is distinctive. If you have any questions about applying under trade mark class 25, contact our experienced trade mark lawyers on 1300 657 423 or fill out the form on this page.
Frequently Asked Questions
Class 25 is a classification number used by IP Australia to manage intellectual property trade mark applications. It relates to clothing items, among other items.
You can choose as many trade mark classes as are relevant to your trade mark. However, be careful that you do not select too many classes, especially irrelevant classes.