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Benefits Of An Unregistered Trademark

An unregistered trademark provides limited benefits and protections. Here are several ways in which an unregistered trademark might be useful:

Common Law Rights

Actual use of a mark in commerce can establish trademark rights. However, this does not need a formal registration. Using a trademark in your goods or services can give the owner common law rights.

Local Protection

Unregistered trademarks may offer local protection in specific regions or markets. This applies in marketplaces where the mark is utilized. Also,  customers must understand it as designating the origin of products or services.

Notice to Others

Using an unregistered trademark can make people aware of your claim to the mark. Hence, it may dissuade possible infringers from using a confusingly similar mark. Thus, public use of a trademark may aid in establishing priority. This prevents others from claiming it as theirs.

Enforcement Actions

Owners of unregistered trademarks can legally sue anyone who commits trademark infringement or unfair competition. This is under the common law principles. Therefore, be ready as it is more challenging. Legal remedies are less for unregistered trademarks. Unregistered trademark owners may seek prohibitive orders and damages for unlawful use of their marks.

Path to Registration

The continued and regular use of unregistered trademarks can boost the mark’s distinctiveness. Utilizing the mark to build a solid reputation and goodwill in the community might help a registration application be approved.

 

Remember that an unregistered trademark has limited benefits. Consider registering your trademarks with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for better protections. Owners of a registered trademarks enjoy a legal presumption of ownership and validity. Statutory remedies are available for registered trademarks.

Consider the long-term strategic importance of registering your trademarks. Consult with a qualified trademark attorney to help you determine the best approach for enforcing trademark rights.

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