A Trademark generally refers to a "brand" or "logo".
Trademark registration can also be obtained for a business name, distinctive catch phrases, taglines or captions.
Properly used and promoted, a Trademark may become the most valuable asset of a business. Trademarks such as Coca Cola, HP, Canon, Nike and Adidas serve as an indication of origin of the goods as well as an indication of quality.
It is also essential to obtain trademark registration for the business name/trade name under the Trademarks Act. Registration of a company or business name under the Companies Act does not in itself give protection against others who might commence using identical or similar marks.
Use of TM, SM and ® symbols
'TM' stands for Trademark and 'SM' stands for Servicemark.
The use of TM and SM symbols notifies the public that the company is claiming exclusive ownership of the trademark and can generally be used by one who has filed a trademark application.
The ® symbol, can be used only once the trademark is registered and the registration certificate is issued. Also, you may use the registration symbol only in connection with the goods and/or services in respect of which the trademark is registered.
The registration process is the same for both trademarks and servicemarks.
Advantages / Benefits of Trademark Registration
Trademarks benefit both businesses and consumers. Trademarks allow businesses to build an identity and reputation with customers, and thereby grow or expand their business. They allow consumers to take an informed buying decision by searching out familiar brand names and avoid bad buying experiences by avoiding the brands they didn't like
- Confers upon the owner the exclusive right to use the brand.
- Protects hard earned goodwill in the business.
- Protects your Name / Brand Name from being used in a same or similar fashion, by any other business firm, thus discourages others from cashing on your long built goodwill.
- Gives your products a status of 'Branded Goods'.
- To obtain legal relief in respect of infringement (misuse by others) of the trade mark.
- Power to assign (transfer) the trade mark to others for consideration.