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How Long Does a Trademark Application Take in the UK?
Your brand name is one of your most precious business assets and you should aim to protect your brand name with a trademark as soon as you can. But, you need to know how to trademark a name to ensure It's protected correctly. Follow these three simple rules for registering your name.
1) Make sure that your name is unique. A trade mark must be unique and distinctive in identifying your products or services. Often people try to register a trademark for the wrong reasons, to try and prevent others from using a commonly associated word for example. This is not what trademark registration is for and such approaches will not work. Make sure that your trademark is not descriptive of your product or service and ensure that there are no other existing businesses using the name you want.
2) Continuing from the previous point. Make sure that your name is not already being used for a similar product or service. If there is a company that's trading with similar products or services it could cause you problems down the road, even if they do not have a registered trademark. A business that has been trading under a name for a period of time in a particular territory still has rights, especially if they can prove that they have a reputation. Even if you successfully register a name, if someone else can prove you're causing confusion to their customers then you could face some kind of action. So, just avoid using a name that someone else is clearly using.
3) It goes without saying, but we have to say it. Ensure that there are no registered trademarks for the name you want, in the territory you want in the class you require to protect your brand.
You can run searches yourself on government databases. But, we advise using our Trademark Search and Review service. It's just £5.99 and will help clarify if your name meets the requirements for registration by the IPO and also if there are any directly conflicting registered trademarks.
Once you've clarified that your name meets the requirements for registration and there are no obvious conflicting trademarks then you can proceed to file your application with the IPO.
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How to Register a Trademark
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