Do You Need to Trademark Your Logo?

Law Blog

If you have a successful business, one of the assets of the business can be the name and identifiable logo of the business, as this can attract customers and be a way to capture some brand loyalty. However, applying for a trademark on your logo can be expensive and time-consuming. Here are some questions to help you to decide if you need to trademark your logo. 

How distinct is your logo?

If you have a relatively simple logo that is not too distinct from other logos it can be hard to prove a trademark. You need to prove that your trademark is immediately discernible as the logo of your company and is distinct from that of your competitors. If your current logo doesn't pass this test, it could be worth considering whether the current logo provides much value to your company. Some companies, such as large retailers, gain a lot of value from logos, whilst other companies, such as professional services tends to rely more on the name of the company. Generic symbols, such as using a cartoon pizza for a pizza chain, don't tend to be able to be trademarked, as these symbols are generic for the industry. 

Do you sell internationally? 

If your company's branches operate in a number of countries, you will need to apply for trademarks in these countries separately. This can be very expensive and time-consuming, so if you do not assign much value to your logo, or really only assign a value in one country, it can be worth only applying for a trademark in that area. 

How often do you change your logo?

Some companies, such as technology or fashion companies, tend to regularly change their logos to keep their logo looking fresh and cutting edge. As the application process can be quite long and expensive, it is often not worth applying for a trademark for a logo which is likely to change soon. Unfortunately trademarking is very precise, so even small tweaks to the logo will leave it uncovered by a previous trademark. 

If you would like to trademark your logo, it is a good idea to chat with a commercial lawyer. They can help you to assess whether your logo is likely to be able to be trademarked, as well as helping to decide if it will make sense financially. If you do decide to proceed, they can also help to prepare the application. 


5 June 2017

Learning about the law

I love watching legal dramas from all different countries. I often call up my friend who is a lawyer to ask her about whether the cases I have seen on the latest drama are realistic or if they wouldn't happen that way in Australia. It's so interesting to me to see the changes that they make to make the stories flow more convincingly as well as the differences between the law in Australian compared to other countries. This blog is for other fans of legal dramas like me and has some tips on the best places to get real legal advice (hint, it's not on the TV!).