As we are in the midst of the COVID-19 epidemic that refuses to go away, we have to find a way to ensure that our business’s doesn’t get erased from the memories from our customers. The way to do that is branding. However, remote work has created a lot of issues in this regard and we can’t to as much as it can be done to protect our company’s brand.
Therefore, we have to turn to a more technically “legal” aid called brand registration or trademark registration. Trademark registration in India is a way to protect the identity of your brand and preventing others from using it without your consent. It puts your business on the frontline and ensures that your customers remember whose product they are using.
Thus, through this article, we are going to teach you 3 ways to protect your company’s brand. Be sure to take all of what is written here in, because in this time of pandemic, remembering your name is everything.
The First Way: See What’s out there
Trademark registration is a long and challenging process. It’s because it’s not only upto the government department to grant you trademark registration – the general public plays the role as well. Therefore, before taking up that challenging endeavour, search and analyse the trademarks that are already registered.
To do that, you have to conduct a trademark search. It’s a simple process where you insert your trademark name inside the trademark search portal to see if any result similar to that comes up. If it does, you will have to strategize and think of some other trademark. If it doesn’t, you are “almost” ready to move forward with trademark registration in India online.
Seeing what’s out there prior to following the steps of trademark registration is an important step. If you someone file and get the trademark you wanted – which is less likely – someone can file a case against you if your trademark is even remotely similar to the one already registered. Therefore, analyze, and be ready.
Now, remember that trademark search is a process that might appear to be easy, but it’s also easy to make easy while conducting it. Therefore, you must only put your trust in your neighbourhood trademark agent to conduct the search efficiently.
The Second Way: Starting the Process of Trademark Registration
Once you have fully analyzed, reanalyzed and re-re-analyzed the trademarks that are currently available in the market, you are ready to start the process of trademark registration in India. The process can be listed in the following steps:
- Deciding the trademark: After careful consideration of what’s present, you have to design the trademark logo and/or decide the trademark name that’s:
- Not deceptively similar to the ones already present
- Not trying to infringe on present trademarks.
- File the application of trademark registration: Once you have decided the brand through which you want to present your company, you can move forward with filing the application of trademark registration. The trademark registration India is online. So don’t worry about having to leave your home.
- Before submitting the application: before you submit the application, you will be asked to verify the details you’ve filled. Verify and re-verify those details. No stone should be unturned and no detail should be missed or filled incorrectly.
- Finally, submit the application
- Keep an eye on the application status: Once you submit the application, you will be given a trademark registration application number. It’s your key to check upon the status of your trademark application. If at any moment there’s a status that might indicate that your application can be rejected, you can take pre-emptive measures to make corrections.
Once the application is accepted, it is published in the trademark journal. It’s at this point that the government becomes a spectator to the trademark registration application, just like you. It’s the people that decide your fate. If during the 4 months of trademark publishing, your application doesn’t get the ire of anyone; your trademark will be registered in India. If not, then it will be start of a long and drawn out legal battle that we better not discuss in this blog.
The Final Way: After Trademark Registration
Trademark registration is not the final step that protects your brand. All it does is gives you the power to enforce your trademark rights. The final way of brand protection is for you to be alert enough to be able to enforce these rights on time.
New trademark applications are filed nearly every day. And for better or for worse, you have to look at all of them if you want your brand to remain protected. You have two ways to deal with this issue:
- Set up a Google alert: You can set up a Google alert that informs you of any new trademark applications that you would then have to go through to check if you’re being infringed.
- Or, you can hire a third party to do this job: This party will be responsible for keeping a watchful eye on the trademark on your behalf. Working on your retainer, they will ensure that no trademark similar to your own makes through registration.
As there are many trademark applications filed on a daily basis, you are bound to encounter one or two that matches your trademark. Therefore, it will behove you to be ready and take legal action at that time. However, don’t overdo it, for it’s not uncommon for many individuals to decide the same trademark while believing that it’s unique. Thus, first, you must hold dialogue with that individual. If the matter fixes without going to the court, take that chance. If it doesn’t, you can move forward with taking any legal action that you see fit.
Protecting our brand is important during this time of being forced to work from home. You have to take all the optimal legal steps to make sure your company’s trademark is always protected and always on the mind of your customers.