Protecting your brand from identity theft by Trademark registration

Protecting your brand from identity theft by Trademark registration

February 28, 2020

The first costly mistake people make when branding their big idea is that they don’t start with intellectual property. It’s a big risk to not register your brand name as a trademark immediately you decide on a name.

It’s a known fact that individuals want to be associated with success. It’s the same way every business would like to be identified with a good brand name and that is the reason why many businesses choose to copy others by branding in a similar way as opposed to setting up something totally new.

It is for this reason that you protect your business, brand and goodwill associated with it by trademark registration. Protect it from what is know as “brand identity theft”.

What is brand identity theft?

It’s the deliberate use of someone else’s business name, logo, slogan or other branding, usually as a method to confuse consumers, gain financial advantage, or obtain other benefits.

Understanding trademarks: What can they do?

First, it’s important to understand the distinction between the three types of protection available from the government;

  1. copyrightprotects original works of authorship both published and unpublished, such as artistic works like poetry, novels, movies, songs, computer software and architecture. Copyrights do not protect facts, ideas, systems or methods of operation.
  2. Patentsprotect inventions or discoveries such as processes, machines, and designs for products.
  3. trademarkis a word, phrase, name or symbol that identifies a company, a product or a service and distinguishes it from competitors.

Trademark registration can be used to identify your company, product or service and distinguish it from competitors. You can trademark your company name, product names, logos, and taglines. You can’t trademark an invention or a piece of software.

Trade/product names cannot be protected by either CAC registration or domain name registration but only by trademark registration.

Once registered, trademarks are valid for seven (7) years after which you can renew for another seven (7) years and then a further fourteen (14) years. There is no limit to the number of times you can renew your trademark. If you follow the rules for care and feeding of your trademark, you’ll have nothing to worry about. Maintain your trademark registration, keep your trademark in the public eye, and you can sleep soundly with no nightmares about trademark infringement to keep you awake.

Don’t spend time in court proving you were using it first, trademark it first!

Team 618 Bees

 

 

The information in this blog post (“post”) is provided for general informational purposes only, no information contained in this post should be construed as legal advice, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter. No reader of this post should act or refrain from acting on the basis of any information included in, or accessible through this post without seeking the appropriate legal or professional advice from the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a lawyer. This post is protected by intellectual property law and regulations. It may however be shared using appropriate sharing tools provided that our authorship is always acknowledged and this Disclaimer Notice attached

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Frequently Asked

  • Why must I file Annual Returns?

    It is a mandatory statutory requirement under the Companies and Allied Matters Act to file Annual Returns yearly. 

  • Do I need a Company Secretary?

    A limited liability company (LLC) must not have a company secretary.

  • What is a testimonium clause in an agreement?

    This is the part of the agreement where the witness attests to have witnessed the execution of the agreement.

  • What are the benefits of Registering with SON?
    1. Product traceability in the Nigerian market
    2. Detection of counterfeit products
    3. Barriers to the circulation of substandard goods
    4. The official SON Product Registration Logo and number are displayed on registered products.
  • Is it legal to transfer the personal data you obtained legally to another person?

    No, its not legal. This is because the law prohibits anyone from transferring the data of a third party to another person without consent from the third party to do same even if the data was rightfully obtained in the first instance.

  • Does a trademark search automatically reserve my trademark name?

    No, a trademark search does not automatically reserve that which is sought to be trademarked. A search ascertains whether that which is sought to be trademarked is available or violates any existing trademark.

  • When can I start renewal of the registration of my product(s) with NAFDAC?

    You can start renewal 6 months to the date of expiry.

  • How many directors do I need to start a company?

    A minimum number of one (1) adult director is required to form a company.

  • Can I trademark my logo and name separately? Why is this a good idea?

    Yes you can. The advantage is that it gives you the opportunity to have more than one logo or the opportunity to change your logo easily as opposed to registering the name and the logo as one trademark.

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