Trademark Infringement

Trademark Infringement happens when you use an already registered trademark without the permission of its owner. However; an infringement lawsuit prevents the unauthorised use from causing confusion among the people.

An infringement case can be established for a mark which is duly registered however; for an unregistered mark remedies like passing off/misrepresentation are available.

How to determine if your trademark is infringed?

There are different ways in which your competitors or a third party can harm your trademark (Brand identity).

Be observant if –

  • The other party is intentionally claiming their registration on your trademark or False imposition of the ® sign on unregistered trademarks.
  • Claiming a trademark even after non-renewal/restoration. 
  • The party on purpose wants to confuse the customer for competing with a similar brand.
  • The party replaces one trademark with another offering the same goods and services. 
  • Applying false trademark on the processing, packaging or manufacturing of products and services.
  • Making substantial alterations in the original mark before using. 

How to prevent trademark infringement? 

It is important to maintain the authenticity of your trademark once it gets registered. Here’s how: 

Monitor Your Trademark 

Quick Company’s Trademark Watch allows you to manage your trademark and know its possibilities of getting infringed. It works on a smart algorithm which shows similar or deceptive marks which match your trademark. 

Tip: For a trademark owner, it is necessary to use ® along with the trademark so that people are aware of its registration.

You can take prior action by filing an opposition for the mark (if it is in the registration process) you feel is infringing your Trademark Rights. 

Also, you can file a lawsuit against the individual/company (already registered) to seek civil or criminal remedies. 

For example: Make My Trip has filed a case in the Delhi High Court against 5 Companies who are said to be using a similar name for their business.  

An alternative for Unregistered Trademarks 

Unregistered Trademarks can also seek help through passing off in case of trademark infringement. It is a common law principle which prevents the use of similar goods or services by any person other than the registered owner of the mark. 

Factors considered for Passing-Off

Misinterpretation 

No business/individual can represent his goods as the goods and services of another. 

Resemblance

It is necessary to understand the degree of similarity between two marks regarding goods or services, name/logo and trademark classes. 

Goodwill

The party filing the suit of passing off has to prove that it has attained goodwill in the marketplace for the trademark in question. 

Protect your Trademark

Quick Company’s Trademark Search Tool helps you to know the possible alternatives for the applied mark by displaying exact, similar or phonetic matches with identical matches from all the trademark classes. 

 

Tip: There are positive chances to win a passing-off case if your trademark is in prior-use.

 

 


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