Trade Mark FAQs
Posted on 26th August 2021 at 17:22
WHAT CAN BE A TRADE MARK?
A Trade Mark can consist of words (including personal names), designs, letters, numerals or the shape of goods or their packaging, sounds or smells.
DO I NEED A TRADE MARK?
This depends on if you have something unique that you would like to protect. A trade mark may become essential to your business in the future and save a lot of headaches down the road. If you are unsure regarding anything to do with trade marks our expert team with over 35 years' experience are on hand to advise, read more about our IP services here.
ARE ALL TRADE MARKS REGISTERABLE?
No, a trade mark will not be accepted for registration if it is not distinctive enough. We will advise in our report ways in which you can make your trade mark more distinctive and help you with your application. However, in the case that a trade mark which is not distinctive may be accepted for registration if it can be shown that the trade mark had acquired a distinctive character because it had been in use for over 5 years. We are on hand to guide you through these requirements and make the process simple for you.
WHAT CLASS DOES TRADE MARK BELONG TO?
It is important to find out the correct class for your trade mark when applying. A new application will have to be made if you apply using the incorrect class. Trade marks can have more than one class and each additional class applied for has a charge of £100 plus VAT. Feel free to contact us and our team will be able to advise which classes apply to your trade mark.
HOW LONG DOES A TRADE MARK REGISTRATION LAST?
A trade mark registration is renewable every 10 years and therefore can last indefinitely if the registration is renewed.
IS A TRADE MARK REGISTRATION EFFECTIVE WORLDWIDE?
No, a trade mark is only effective in the country where the trade mark is registered. However, there are several International Conventions that exist which assists clients who wish to register a trade mark in more than one country with one single application which are more cost effective than obtaining separate national registrations.
HOW IMPORTANT ARE TRADE MARK CLEARANCE SEARCHES?
Trade mark clearance searches are particularly important as they are the first step to determining whether the trade mark you wish to use, and register is available to do so.
We strongly recommend that, to avoid any potential conflict between your proposed trade mark and any existing confusingly similar trade marks, that you instruct us to carry out a comprehensive trade mark search on your behalf.
CAN I AMEND MY TRADE MARK OR ADD FURTHER GOODS OR SERVICES TO THE TRADE MARK REGISTRATION?
No, once a trade mark has been accepted for registration it cannot be altered except for the owner's name and address, a fresh registration will need to be made for any amendments.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO OBTAIN A TRADE MARK REGISTRATION IN THE UK?
The procedure for obtaining a trade mark registration in the United Kingdom usually takes approximately 6 months. Registration is effective from the date of application.
HOW DO I KNOW WHETHER MY PARTICULAR TRADE MARK IS ALREADY IN USE?
Before an application is placed to register your proposed trade mark you must ensure your mark will not conflict with any existing trade mark. Furthermore, you should also ensure that there is no existing common law trade marks, or in other words, unregistered trade marks, limited companies, business names and any reference to your proposed trade mark on the Internet. Therefore, we offer two levels of trade mark searching:
Identical search -This search will act as an indication to whether your proposed trade mark is available or is registered by someone else. The fee is £80 + VAT.
Identical and availability search -This search should be conducted if it is your intention to obtain a trade mark registration. We will give comprehensive advice concerning the results of the searches, and advice if the mark can go forward for registration. The fee is £150.
Find out more about all of the National Business Register's Trade Mark services here.
HOW MUCH DOES A TRADE MARK COST?
Our basic search is £80 plus VAT and our search and acceptance report is £150 plus VAT, which will advise you if the trade mark you submit is likely to be accepted for registration.
Once it has been established your proposed trade mark is available for use, it can be applied for at the UK Trade mark Office. Our trade mark agents will follow through the entire process and obtain registration within 6 months, please note your trademark is valid from the day of application though. The cost to place an application on file to register a trademark in the UK is £375 plus VAT for one class, any additional classes are charged at £100 plus VAT each.
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