Is It Worth Registering A Trademark?

Trademark Law

Is it worth registering a trademark for a company name or an artificial word?

Protecting a trademark or registering with the trademark office pays off quickly for brands for which sales are planned.

The relatively low costs of registration will usually only make up a fraction of a month’s turnover and, compared to the possible costs of legal disputes about a trademark, can be earned back quickly.

Made-up words are more distinctive and particularly well suited to distinguish between shops and brands.

For example, a description such as “Baseler Restaurant” or Baseler Restaurant GmbH is weak in distinctive character because this applies more or less to each of the hundreds of Basel restaurants. The made-up word “BaRest” does not exist otherwise and is suitable for labeling, i.e. more distinctive.

Particularly required when using a made-up word

The registration of a trademark is necessary, especially with made-up words or logos. If, for example, an artificial word is used by a company that differs from the company name (example: the company SAMT AG with the product branded machine), then an entry is strongly recommended.

For example, in the case of a sole proprietorship (freelance or self-employed) that operates under the company name of Mr. Wagner Friseur and uses the brand “CuttingRoom” (or other artificial words), trademark protection is urgently recommended.

The trademark used is not registered in the commercial register and is not protected, but can be protected by a trademark application.

Is my company name protected or should I register a trademark?

from the legal commentary “… A company name entered in the commercial register offers a certain level of protection. In the case of sole proprietorships (freelancers or self-employed), spatial protection is limited to the place of entry including the relevant economic area (Art. 946 Para. 1 OR).

According to OR Art. 951, the sole proprietorship of the registered company of sole proprietorships also applies to the company of the general partnership, the limited partnership and the limited partnership Clearly differentiate legal forms. “

A company registered in the company index or commercial register enjoys the protection of its brand name in the scope of application. In Switzerland, this protection applies to the whole of Switzerland.

The protection relates to a registered company; unregistered sole proprietorships do not have this protection.

Consequences of using a trademark without registration

The consequences of not a registered trademark can result in high costs. If, as in our example, another company registers the made-up word or the trademark used as a trademark, the “original” trademark user can be prohibited from using the trademark.

In principle, a trademark can also be created through use, but an appropriate survey must be carried out by experts in order to prove that the trademark is known among users. The company that registers a trademark can not only prohibit all other companies from using this trademark but can also demand compensation and sales information.

For the company that is no longer allowed to use the brand, there are costs for legal proceedings, changing signs and letterheads, changing phone book entries and advertising materials, losing regular customers.

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