Trademarks are an IPR used to identify and protect a logo, slogan, brand or product name. They are used to create identity and provide information about who a particular product belongs to. Trademark protection prevents competitors from using the same or similar trademark without permission.
There are different types of trademarks, which are indicated by different symbols:
There is a difference in legal protection depending on whether a trademark is registered or unregistered. As a rule of thumb, unregistered trademarks will generally provide less protection compared to a registered trademark. The trade-off to the longer and more expensive process of registering trademark is they generally provide better protection in return. In the event of infringement of the trademark, a registered trademark will make it easier and simpler to prove the exclusive right of the trademark during a lawsuit, as well as provide opportunities for financial relief in the form of reimbursement of the costs of litigation. There is no legal presumption of ownership and exclusive right to use unregistered trademarks, and these will therefore not provide protection to the same extent as registered trademarks. Prosecution with unregistered trademarks is therefore far more complicated.