Smart and careful management of your trademarks and designs will keep you one step ahead of the competition.

Trademarks

Trademarks distinguish your products and services from those of your competitors. They are the embodiment of your company’s reputation. Trademarks can always be maintained if they are carefully managed.

The first step is to register them in a trademarks register, since they are not protected simply by use. If your trademark is properly registered, you cannot be prevented from using it and you can invest more. You can also take effective action against unauthorised use by others.

You can register many things besides names and logos, such as colours, shapes, sound samples and moving characters, but the sign must be able to distinguish your services or products from those of others. Descriptive signs are more difficult to register and protect and therefore more expensive.

Infringement and strategy


Careful management of your trade marks sometimes means taking action against similar trademarks. Failing to take appropriate action against unauthorised use of your trade marks reduces their legal, and therefore also their commercial, value. We will help you to determine the options available in each situation and explain the associated risks. We will then advise you whether or not to take action, depending on the circumstances.

We have the expertise and experience to combat infringements and aim to find an amicable solution in most cases. We only take legal action if the interests and benefits outweigh the disadvantages.

Mark Your Brand protects your intellectual property. We offer trademark watch and internet monitoring services to track new applications and identify copycat trade marks on internet platforms. With input on competitors, producers and your production chain, we oppose registration where commercially expedient and ensure that copycats never reach the market.



Designs

How do you guard against counterfeiting or imitation? You can register a design to protect all or part of your new product. A design is a representation of a two- or three-dimensional object such as packaging, furniture and gadgets, but also patterns.

The design right is valid for five years and can be renewed every five years up to a maximum protection period of 25 years.

What are the main criteria for registering a design? The design of your product must be new and visible (externally). It is important to make the right choices when creating your design. Some elements cannot be protected because they are dictated by functionality or are no longer new. Is the quality of your representations (line drawings or photographic representations) good enough, and what is the process if production is located outside Europe?



Strategy and portfolio management

Your business does not stand still; it is constantly changing - when you expand your package of services or enter a new geographical market, for example, but also when you sell off a business unit.

Where do your trademarks and designs need strengthening and, equally importantly, where can they be scaled back? What action does this require, now and in the long term?
We will work with you to bring your legal rights into line with the developments and commercial plans of your business.