Trademark – what is it?
Trademark – what is it? A trademark is also called a trademark or brand (protection is carried out on a territorial basis – in each country separately), which have been successfully registered and entered in the state register of intellectual property in the country of registration of the brand, and received a special certificate.
The term “trademark” is legal in the USA, UK and others it is used legally in the business sphere.
The concept of a brand is inherent in the features of any TM that has won the authority and trust of consumers.
These are the logo, slogan, music, associations, reputation and popularity. How does the term “trademark” refer to a brand? In order for a business owner to conduct his business safely and calmly, and his brand to be reliably protected by law, a trademark is needed. This is the legal side of the brand, which is a protection against the problems existing in this area.
Who can register intellectual property?
We have sorted out what a trademark is, now let’s get into who can register a TM. Physical and legal entities that produce goods or provide services can individualize their activities by registering a mark. In Russia, and in some other countries, individuals without registering an IP will not be able to register a trademark, in addition, liability in the form of a fine, compulsory work or arrest is provided for illegal conduct of commercial activities.
Conclusion – not only a company (as a legal entity), but also an individual (with the exception of some countries) can register their brand for themselves.
Benefits of a registered brand versus an unregistered one?
Several tens of thousands of signs are registered annually, and their number only increases every year. Why does this trend take place in the modern world, and what advantages does a company with a registered trademark have?
We have identified the main advantages that will convince you to register your intellectual property:
- protection from competing companies. By having a registered trademark, you will be able to protect yourself from the release of counterfeit products, which will not only reduce your profits and customer base, but also lead to a drop in reputation;
- increase in the value of the company. The brand can be turned into an asset of the company and put on the balance sheet at the price of the market, so you can increase the value of the enterprise. A trademark can also act as collateral for a loan or as an authorized capital;
- creation of a franchise. With a registered mark, you have the opportunity to conclude a commercial concession (franchising) agreement, you will be able to grant rights to use your brand and receive royalties;
- this advantage makes sense only in the Russian Federation when optimizing tax expenses. Using a patented brand, the business owner will be able to significantly optimize taxation. For example, a business owner has the status of an Individual Entrepreneur under the Simplified Taxation System and an LLC under the General Taxation System. He has the opportunity to conclude a license agreement from the IP, the LLC will pay money to the IP for the right to use intellectual property, thereby increasing costs. In turn, the individual entrepreneur will need to pay instead of 20% (which the LLC would have to) – 6% of the income received.
How is a brand registered?
This process is similar in each country, but has its own characteristics. In general, registration takes a lot of time and requires special care:
- check the possibility of registering your brand in a particular class and make sure that it is possible to register from the legal side;
- make the initial payment of the fee;
- collect the necessary documentation with the application and send the package to the relevant authorities for consideration;
- go through the paperwork and wait for the decision of the body;
- make the next payment of the fee, and then receive a document on successful registration.
All of these stages take, on average, from 14 to 18 months. It should be borne in mind that self-registration is not always successful and ends with an approving response from government agencies. You can pay all the fees, but miss any reason for refusal, make a mistake and lose not only time but also money. Correcting an error will cost extra money, and it will also drag out the already long paperwork, since communication with the authority is via mail (if you do not have an electronic signature).
To minimize the risks and not spend a lot of money, we advise you to contact our specialists. They will help you collect the documentation, guide you through each step and lead to a positive result!
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