Developing a unique name, logo and/or other branding mechanisms covered by the law of trademarks is crucial in business. Your customers can recognize your product or service when they see your trademark. But another company can copy it, which can be confusing to your customers. That’s why it’s vital to better ensure that you can enforce the rights to your trademark by registering it.
There are four primarily benefits associated with registering trademarks.
Providing public notice
When you register a trademark, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) will list it in its database. Anyone who searches similar trademarks in the database will see yours. You can also use the federal trademark registration symbol, ®, with your trademark to show you have registered it. This can deter other businesses from copying it even before searching on the USPTO database.
Preserving your right to take legal action
If someone uses your trademark, you can take legal action against them, provided you also have the right to use it. If you fail to register your trademark and another business uses it, you may not have grounds to stop them – your case may not constitute trademark infringement.
Protecting yourself internationally
You can use your trademark registration to file for protection in foreign countries, that is if your business operates outside the U.S.
Preventing the importation of counterfeit goods
It can be frustrating to learn that goods similar to yours (using your business name or symbol) are being produced outside the U.S. and imported to the country. Not only could this be damaging to your company’s reputation since you didn’t oversee the quality and integrity of the goods, but you can also lose customers to the business trading in these counterfeit goods.
By seeking legal guidance proactively, you can register your mark or marks in order to better ensure that these goals are achieved.