Home – New Forums Starting your journey why get a trademark?

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  • #990902
    Rking100
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    Hello, I am just trying so understand the benefits of a tm over just registering a biz name, I have been on the ato site, it says without a trade mark, another person can register a similar name as my business- so they still cant register the exact name right? So lets say I register “good times” online watch shop, someone cannot register that exact name and would have to settle for “nice times” ?

    Also, if I pay to have a logo made, I would assume the rights to it would be mine, could someone legally copy it? Thanks for any replies.

    #1179052
    twillis
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    Rking100, post: 208740 wrote:
    Hello, I am just trying so understand the benefits of a tm over just registering a biz name, I have been on the ato site, it says without a trade mark, another person can register a similar name as my business- so they still cant register the exact name right? So lets say I register “good times” online watch shop, someone cannot register that exact name and would have to settle for “nice times” ?

    Also, if I pay to have a logo made, I would assume the rights to it would be mine, could someone legally copy it? Thanks for any replies.

    Anyone can register a business name in the absence of a trademark. A business name does not give you exclusive trading rights over that name.

    A trademark however protects intellectual property rights, and is a step you should consider if you’re looking to protect your business name from being replicated or reappropriated. Keep in mind that this is a 6 month process, which will allow time for fellow businesses to dispute your application.

    Trademarks will also give you 10 years of protection, while business names need to be renewed annually.

    There’s a great article by ASIC on this here. Feel free to PM me should you need any more details too.

    Good luck!

    #1179053
    ThexArm
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    You register a trademark so that you can build a brand which doesn’t have any similar name confusion in the market.

    There are cases where registered trade mark has own cases over business name registration. With a registered trade mark the owner can take legal action against you to withdraw your business name.

    I am no expert in trade marks but there are experts on the forum hopefully they can answer you better. But, if you like a name which you want to protect you better register it with IP Australia.

    #1179054
    Rking100
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    Okay thanks for those responses, so no one can register my exact business name even if it is not trade marked, but getting a trade mark will stop people registering similar names in the same field of work?

    #1179055
    JacquiPryor
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    Hi There,

    Correct. The exact name couldn’t be registered as a business name if you’ve already done so. Very similar names could be though. Using your originally example – if you registered GOOD TIMES as a business name, someone else may be able to register GOOD TIMES MELBOURNE; GOOD TIMES SYDNEY etc etc.

    If you registered the trademark for GOOD TIMES then you could stop others using the same/similar name for the same or related products/services to yours (unless they have a valid defence to trademark infringement claims). Note that registering the trademark does not automatically prevent people from registering similar business names or using names in the marketplace – it is up to the trademark owner to monitor and take action where they feel needed.

    A while ago now I wrote an article for Flying Solo about the benefits of registering your trademark – http://www.flyingsolo.com.au/startup/business-start-up/five-benefits-of-registering-a-trademark

    It is a lengthy process though – taking a minimum of 7.5 months in Australia from filing to issuing of a registration certificate.

    In addition to stopping other people using similar names, one of the greatest benefits is others can’t stop you! If you trade with your business name and a trademark holder feels that name is confusingly similar to a trademark they have already registered then they could choose to take action against you for infringement. Having registered the business name does not safeguard you against others taking trademark infringement action if they believe justified.

    As to the logo – logos can fall under both copyright and trademark laws. If you commission a designer to come up with your logo, ensure that the ownership does become yours. If someone copied that logo or a substantial part of it without the owner’s permission there could be grounds to suggest it is copyright infringement. Each case would need to be reviewed to determine if there is unlawful conduct occurring or not.

    I hope this assists. All the best.
    The cost of registering a trademark – versus defending yourself against trademark infringement action, or re-branding once established, is quite low.

    #1179056
    Tracey G
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    This is a great question.

    One of my clients chose to trademark his business name because he was moving into a fairly new niche in a very competitive industry. He anticipated that other businesses would head in the same direction as him and he wanted to do what he could to block competitors from using the name or something similar.

    About logos: it’s common practice for a Graphic Designer to have a signed contract in which ownership of a logo is transferred to the client upon completion of the work. It’s best not to assume ownership is yours but to instead have it in writing. Jacqui Pryor’s advice is good re copyright infringement of a logo.

    #1179057
    Rking100
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    Thank you for those great explainaions, I have a good understanding now. Just one more quicky on the matter, I remember reading somthing like descriprive words what the business does couldnt be trade marked? Eg. Even though jims mowing is trademarked, someone could start a business called tims mowing using a completely different logo graphic and would be ok?

    #1179058
    Lending Mate
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    Hi RKing100,

    You will need to chat to a Patent/Trademark Attorney or business. There may be some on this site. If not please PM me as mine was great but please look on Flying Solo first to help a fellow business.:)

    My company name and logo is trademarked and was the best thing I ever did. Last week I spoke to someone who had a big business but no trademark etc and in the industry she was in it can get interesting!

    Cheers Pete

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