A trade mark is a “brand” that indicates the owner of goods or services and is expressed in words, slogans, logos, domain names, shapes and packaging of goods. If the trade mark is registered, the owner has the exclusive right to use the mark, which can last indefinitely, subject to renewal every 10 years. The mark may apply territorially for the UK only or for Europe (a community trade mark CTM) and for many other countries throughout the world.
If you have a trade mark which is not registered, it’s referred to as an unregistered trade mark. The owner can protect his unregistered trade mark by bringing an action against an infringer for “Passing-off”, which is not as strong or as easy a claim. So it’s better to have a registered mark.
Depending on your type of business and the markets and territories in which you intend to trade, we can advise you accordingly. We have many years of experience of advising clients in this area of the law.