Trademark trouble is bound to find you at some stage if you don’t have your name registered as a trademark. Just this week I saw a client, who is a business coach, an amazing lady, who had previously registered her business name, her domain name, and her company name. Now she wanted to get her trademark sorted out.
Before seeing me she had not realized that a trademark registration is the strongest type of protection, and it overpowers any of those other kinds of registrations. She thought she was safe because she had her business name registered.
So I did a search for her, and unfortunately somebody else had the exact same name already registered as a trademark. So that means for the past 18 months, she has been infringing somebody else’s registered trademark. It was registered before she even started her business, if she had come to me right at the beginning, I could have told her right from the get go that there was going to be a problem with that name.
Now, she’s facing having to potentially pay all of her profits to the registered trademark owner. That is so gut wrenching, everything she’s done for 18 months and her profits might belong to somebody else. Plus, she’s got the drama of having to rebrand when she’s identified with that name for so long, it is so frustrating, not to mention costly.
I just wonder, do you have your business name registered as a trademark? Because if you don’t, the longer you delay, the more likely you are to have trademark trouble impacting your business at some stage, because generally, the first to file a trademark has the stronger rights. I hope you don’t fall into that category.