As a refresher, it is essential to remember what a trademark is and what it pertains to. There are different ways to protect your intellectual property. For example, if you have written a song, created an album, or wrote a book, you would need to copyright it. Inventions are covered by patents. The name of your business or the logo associated with it can be protected by a trademark.
Registration vs. Trademark
Because almost every business now has a website, there is some confusion about the difference between registering a domain versus obtaining a trademark. When you create a website, you register your domain name with a domain name registrar. This is a company that handles and holds domain names.
By registering your domain name, you are not obtaining trademarks rights. In some circumstances, you may even register your domain name successfully and be told to change it later. Perhaps your domain name is too close to a business’s name that possesses a trademark.
The Benefits of a Trademark
Businesses that sell a product, service, or both can trademark their name. By registering your name, you will prevent others from using it or something similar—unless you have permitted them to do so. A name or logo quickly encompasses what you do and how you do it. In other words, it tells customers your product or service and the values that come along with them.
A trademark protects you on a federal level. If you run a business in Texas, a company in Wisconsin cannot infringe your trademark rights. Using that same example, if the company in Wisconsin searches the trademark database, they will see your name listed there. Even if your trademark hasn’t been fully granted yet, it will record your status as pending.
Filing and submitting an application may deter others from copying or closely replicating your name. It could be a way to prevent problems before they begin. Should there ever be a situation when another business infringes your trademark, the evidence of your legal right to use your trademark is substantial.
Not only will your business’s name be in the trademark database, but the products/services you create/provide will be there too—as well as the date in which you registered the trademark. Not only could this deter others from using your name, but it also gives you a considerable amount of legal ground to stop others from using your intellectual property.
Your intellectual property is a part of your business, and it deserves to be protected. By choosing a professional and experienced intellectual property attorney, you will have the confidence to file correctly. Contact Bashirah Martin, PLLC, to schedule a consultation.