How long is a trade mark valid?

What is a trade mark?

A trade mark is an item of intellectual property and can include a logo, design, jingle, slogan or colours, in fact anything that can be represented graphically.

Why are trade marks important?

Trade marks distinguish a company’s or individual’s products and services from those of its rivals, they are a badge of origin and are linked to the quality of the products and services – thereby enabling it to establish a strong market position.

Do trade marks have legal protection in the UK?

In view of the expense that companies and individuals expand in creating successful trade marks, UK law recognises that it is right that they should be protected.

The Trade Marks Act 1994 enables trademark owners to take legal action against any individual or organisation that uses their trade mark without permission.

How long are trade marks valid in the UK?

Trademark owners must file applications for their trade marks with the Intellectual Property Office in order for the registered protection to come into effect.

They must then renew the trade mark every ten years (from the application date) to continue to benefit from the legal safeguard.

That said, if you have not used your trademark for a continuous period of 5 years then you may struggle to rely on it and it becomes open to challenge by third parties. Keeping your trade marks current and protecting them for any new styles, and products is very important. Successful businesses will often own

How do I renew a trade mark?

A request to renew a trade mark must be submitted to the Intellectual Property Office. The application can be made up to six months before the renewal date and be done online or through the post.

What if I am late in submitting my application for a trade mark renewal?

The law allows you a six-month grace period for submitting your application – although this will mean paying an additional fee.

Is there any additional grace period?

Applications can still be made for an additional six-month period.

Such requests are more onerous, however, as they can only be made through the post and must include a written statement explaining the reason for the late request.

If the Intellectual Property Office rejects your explanation, you will lose part or all of your trade mark and the fee.

What to do in the event that a trade mark is no longer valid?

An expired trade mark is a serious issue as it could encourage a allow rival businesses to start using it for their own benefit – profiting from your enterprise in creating it originally.

In such a situation it is highly recommended that you seek expert help as soon as possible.

Trademark Eagle’s team of in-house legal specialists can provide the advice and guidance you need and ensure that you are aware of all your options.

We may be able to take pre-emptive action to prevent any of your competitors exploiting your trade mark or – if necessary – act on your behalf to seek an amicable agreement.

Acting at all times with the highest levels of integrity, professionalism and confidentiality, Trademark Eagle prides itself on its excellent levels of customer service. By taking the time to get to know your company, we can provide the bespoke advice and support you need.

Please contact us to find out more about how we can help you to protect your trade mark.

Call: 01223 208 624


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