Protecting Your Brand: A Guide to Trademark Lawyers in Canada
Trade-mark lawyers provide a range of services to individuals and companies in Canada who want to protect their intellectual property and their brands. You don’t have to register your name or intellectual property in Canada but it is an important part of the process of protecting your name and commercial identity. Registration gives you immediate protection against anyone who wants to infringe on your rights or use your name or brand without your expressed permission. It is also useful in dealing with some regulatory requirements like French language labelling in the province of Quebec.
Do you need a trade-mark lawyer?
You do have some rights without registering your trademark, but in Canada they are actually very limited. You would also have difficulty defending any claim or pursuing one in court without registration. If you want to ensure that your corporate name or identity is able to stand up in court and if you want to protect the investments that you have made in building up a good name and reputation in business, you should talk to a trademark lawyer. Helping you navigate the trademark registration process is one of the main things that a trademark lawyer in Canada can do for you and your business.
But there are other things that a trademark lawyer can do and many additional services they can provide to their intellectual property clients.
Trademark lawyers in Canada will usually provide an initial consultation where they will explain the process of registering a trademark in Canada and all of the steps that an individual or corporation must follow to meet the requirements. They will advise the clients if they feel that a trademark registration is necessary and appropriate. Then they will research the Canadian trademark database to ensure that the trademark in question is valid and not already being used by another person or company. This is very important, since many disputes arise from trademarks that are not quite identical, but may appear similar when it comes to an appeal in court.
Filing and advice
The trademark lawyer will help you complete the trademark application and file it with the trademark registration authorities. All through this part of the process they will be available to answer questions from the trademark office and provide advice to their clients. After the trademark has been officially registered, they will also assist in the preparation of trademark assignments and any licensing agreements that may be required. As well, trademark lawyers will advise their clients on the best ways to protect their intellectual property in the new world of social media and the Internet.
Additional advice and support
Trade mark lawyers will ensure that any additional documentation and corporate filings that arise from the trademark process like the establishment of holding companies are fully complied with. If there are any challenges to the trademark registration or proceedings before Canada's Trademark Opposition Board, they will provide advice and representation as required. In the unfortunate event that any such dispute ends up before the Federal Court of Canada in trademark litigation, they will look after all representation and presentations to the court. Even after the trademark registration process has been finalized they will be available to assist clients with things like Internet domain name registrations and any disputes that may arise. They may even be able to provide advice to their clients about how to market their newly registered identity online through strategies and tactics like trademark keyword advertising. Plus, they will ensure that any foreign registrations of your trademark that are required for you to conduct business in other jurisdictions are also taken care of.