Trademarks

Many companies have numerous trademarks but all businesses would have at least one trademark which may be the same as their business name. Toyota Corporation uses their TOYOTA house mark as well as many sub-marks like ALTIS, VIOS, CAMRY, PICNIC etc. A trademark can be a symbol like Apple Corporation’s or a slogan like Nike’s “JUST DO IT”, colours like the green and yellow that identifies BP petrol stations, a jingle like the short tune that Hisamitsu used, or the shape of the product or packaging like the Toblerone chocolate or the Nescafe bottle.

We can assist you in the following steps to establish a valuable trademark:

Selection

It is important to select a trademark that will facilitate your marketing efforts but it is also important to select one that you can lay claim to exclusive right of use. You would not want to spend money launching your product yet not be able to keep competitors from adopting an identical or similar mark. We can advise on choosing a trade mark that is qualified for registration.

Search

Before launching a new product or service under a particular trademark, it is advisable to conduct a trademark availability search , confirming that you are free to use the mark without infringing another’s rights and that you will be able to establish exclusive rights to the use of your chosen mark. We can assist in conduct pre-filing searches in Singapore and worldwide for conflicting rights.

Filing and Registration

Although a trader may acquire rights in a trademark through actual use in the marketplace, a trademark registration gives its owner a statutory right against infringement and counterfeiting. Registration will also facilitate commercial dealings like asset transfers, licensing, or using registration as collateral for financing. We can prepare and file trademark applications for you in Singapore and worldwide.

Use

A trademark should be properly used to sustain and enhance its value. You can lose rights to a mark by allowing it to become generic, for example, ASPIRIN and CELLOPHANE. A trademark registration may also be revoked because there has been no trade use for a continuous period of 5 years. You should use the symbol ® next to your trademark if the mark has been registered. If it has not yet been registered, you should use the symbol ™ beside your trademark. We can advise you on what would constitute trademark use so that your mark will not be cancelled for non-use.

Renewals

Generally your trademark will be valid for 10 years and it will need to be renewed if you wish to maintain the trademark registration. We can maintain and renew your trademark registrations for you.

Enforcement

A trademark will lose its value if there is a proliferation of infringements or counterfeits. It is important to have diligent market surveillance. We can assist in enforcing trade mark registrations to prevent the use of conflicting trade marks by competitors