Launching a new brand in the market is always a challenge. It requires lots of effort and good business and marketing strategies as a ground.
Before launching the brand, however, you need to have an appropriate brand name which in most the cases is a product of a brand-building process.
You have two main options in that regard, to try to create the brand name on your own, in case that you don’t have a big marketing budget, or to hire an agency that will do that for you.
In both of the cases, however, there is one specific moment that you need to pay attention to. It is related to the question to what extent you can use and protect your brand.
It can sound not so an important issue at first glance but it is. The reason for this is that if you start using a brand for which there are already registered trademarks by someone else, you risk becoming a trademark infringer. This can create a myriad of problems for you including the need to re-brand and pay compensations.
And what is the chance for this?
It is not negligible at least because there are millions of registered trademarks in the world which in turn require a lot of attention when a new brand is introduced in the market.
One of the ways to escape such negative scenarios is a trademark clearance search to be implemented before the launch. This can save you not only time but money but will protect you from legal pitfalls.
If you want to learn how to do such trademark searches in the US, Canada, the UK, Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand, you can check this new and useful Udemy course on this topic here.
When you want to launch a new brand in the market one of the key moment is to be sure that there is no other identical or similar marks to yours. This is a crucial moment because otherwise after your launch you can be accused of infringement of rights by owners of earlier trademarks.
It’s not enough to check for such earlier marks just before the launch, it’s much better if you do this throughout the brand-building process because you will be able to make the necessary changes in your name without losing time at the last moment.
You have two main options to search for trademarks. The first one is to ask the relevant Patent Office to do that, which is possible because most of the Offices offer such a service. The downside here is that for every search you need to pay a fee and to lose some time due to the fact that such search reports are not instantaneous.
The alternative is to do this search on your own. Is this possible? Yes, it is. Most of the Patent Offices have free and open online databases for trademarks because this information is public. You can check them searching for your trademark.
However, you need to know some of the basic principles of trademark protection and how these database works and their nitty-gritty.
If you want to learn how to do such searches and to save time and money you can check this new Udemy course on this topic which will be launch very soon. It will teach you to perform trademark searches for the territories of the US, Canada, the UK, Republic of Ireland, Australia and New Zealand.
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For more information here.
WIPO reports about the accession of Canada to the Patent Law Treaty, which will enter into force for the country on 30.10.2019.
The trademark registration process in Canada will have some significant changes this year as a result of the trademark law reform which has been addopted recently.
The main changes that have to be taken into account by all who want to protect a trademark in there are:
1. The term of trademark protection will be reduced from 15 to 10 years.
2. Declaration of Use will be no longer required from trademark applicants – as it is well-known Canada, similarly to The US, has required until now such declarations which to show a real use of the sign on the market. This was one of the significant differences when it comes to trademark filing compare to Europe, for instance. But no more. Still, trademark use will remain an important element of the protection because it will be a ground for invalidation in the case of a lack of genuine use.
3. Canada will introduce Nice Classification for goods and services for the purpose of trademark filing. In that way, Canada has joined almost all countries around the world that already use this classification.
4. An additional fee will be paid for every class above the first in case of filling of a trademark application or trademark renewal.
Source: April L. Besl (Dinsmore & Shohl LLP), Lexology.
WIPO reports for the accession of Canada to three important agreements for international protection of trademarks – the Madrid Protocol, Nice Agreement and the Singapore Treaty.
This by itself is a big relief and good news for every trademark applicant, especially an international one because until now Canada has been the last country, member of G8, which didn’t sign these agreements that facilitate significantly the process of trademark protection around the world.
All above-mentioned agreements will enter into force for the country on 17.06.2019, a date after which it will be possible for Canada to be designated in applications for international trademarks.
The Supreme Court of Canada ruled in the case Rogers Communications v Voltage Pictures, where the point at issue is whether the internet service providers (ISPs) have to be compensated for their costs when they give information for potential infringers.
In the case at hand, movies owned by the US company Voltage were been illegally used by Rogers’s individual clients.
The Canadian internet provider agreed to disclose the required information for these persons but only against financial compensation. The US company disagreed.
According to the the Supreme Court’s decision in such cases, the ISP has right to receive a compensation for its reasonable costs but only in a case when the information is not required by the law.
For example, connecting the IP address of a customer to his real identity and submitting this information with the copyright holder is not covered by the law requirements.
WIPO informs about the accession of Canada to the Hague Agreement for international registration of industrial designs. This makes Canada the 55th member state. The agreement will come into force for the country on 05.11.2018.
As it is well-known the Hague Agreement gives an opportunity for an easier filing of international applications for designs.
The concrete accession is one more step by Canada to facilitate all international applicants of intellectual property after the accession to the Madrid Protocol for international protection of trademarks.