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 copyrightprotects original works of authorship both published and unpublished, such as artistic works like poetry, novels, movies, songs, computer software and architecture.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

  • What additional documents do I require to file my Annual Returns?
  • Must my Company Secretary be a Lawyer?

    Although it’s ideal to have a lawyer as a company secretary, it is not compulsory for small private businesses.

  • What are the terms of a contract?
    • an offer and an acceptance.
    • competent parties
    • Consideration
    • Legal subject matter
    • Mutual agreement/ Assent
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    • Obligation
  • What will happen if I buy the wrong category of forms with NAFDAC?

    Nothing, the purchased form will be in your account for future use.

     

  • What is classified as personal data?

    Name, photograph, personal health/bio information, account/financial information, phone number, Address, date of birth, place of birth, Email address, etc.

  • What is eligible for Patent registration?

    Patents are granted for the invention of products or processes. However, for it to be patentable, the invention

    • Must be new,
    • Must have an inventive step that is not obvious to someone with knowledge and experience in the subject,
    • Must be capable of being made or used in some kind of industry and not be, a scientific or mathematical discovery, theory or method, a literary, dramatic, musical or artistic work, a way of performing a mental act, playing a game or doing business, the presentation of information, or some computer programs, an animal or plant variety, a method of medical treatment or diagnosis,
    • And must not be against public policy or morality.
  • Is there a penalty for late renewal of registration of products with NAFDAC?

    Yes, there is a late renewal fee, which is dependent on the category of the product.

  • Who can be directors in my company?

    Any two adults can be directors in a company.

  • Will my trademark registration in Nigeria protect me worldwide?

    No, all intellectual property (IP) rights which includes trademarks are territorial, which means you are protected in the countries in which you register them.

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