- April 15, 2020
- Posted by: United Legal Experts
- Category: Trademarks
A Trademark is a word, logo design, symbol, a phrase that identifies specific goods or services. Trademark gives lawful rights to the owner of the Trademark from being copied or infringed by any other person. A person can get benefit from the trademark registration for his life if he meets the legal statutory requirements.
Types of Trademarks
The most common types of trademarks are words, symbols, design logos, and phrases. There are 7 main categories of trademarks which are as follows:
- Suggestive mark
- Descriptive mark
- Generic mark
- Fanciful mark
- Arbitrary mark
- Trade dresses
A suggestive mark is something that leads to the goods and services of the mark. The word suggestive in terms of a trademark means that a person should understand through imagination what type of goods or service is offered by a company.
A descriptive mark is a type of mark that describes the goods or services to which it applied. Descriptive trademarks cannot be protected by law unless it qualifies the statutory requirement under the law. A descriptive mark may be accepted in some countries e.g in the USA where you have to show to the examiner that the goods and services related to the mark may have secondary meaning and depending upon the advertisement, sales volume, surveys, and tests may allow the trademark to get registered. However, the approval is completely a discretionary power of the examining officer.
A generic term comes from general words or common words which may be used in our daily life. A generic trademark may not get registered unless it acquires a distinctive element. The examples are Cloth Shop, Car Garage, Bikes Shop, etc. This would restrict others from using such common words for usage.
However, if you wish to register the generic trademark, you must have a design mark of a generic term and you must disclaim the generic term while filling the application. This option depends on the description of the examiner whether they satisfy the requirements or not.
A fanciful trademark is the easiest to get approval for. It is a name, term or logo which may be a stylish design or simple word like NIKE or PUMA which are unique in nature.
Arbitrary mark includes the word or a term with a common natural meaning. The most common example is APPLE, which is used for electronics. The word APPLE is a familiar word but in relation to goods or services, it has nothing to do with it.
A trademark is called a service mark if a person is using a trademark for services instead of products.
Trade dress is a unique commercial impression or looks of a product that distinguishes the source. trademark use on products such as packaging may be called a trade dress.
Few Legal Rights of Trademark Owners Need to Know
- An Owner can get the trademark registration for consecutive 10 years which may get renewed upon further request.
- A Trademark owner has a right to use its brand name exclusively.
- A trademark owner can give licenses to gain more monetary benefits from the Trademark and make his brand known in the market.
- A trademark owner shall have a right to claim damages against Trademark infringements.
- A trademark owner shall have a right to take a temporary or permanent injunction against continued infringements.
- A trademark owner should give importance to its brand protection and take all legal measures to protect its brand.
- In case of e-commerce infringement, the owner may request to the e-commerce body to take down the infringing material.