In international trademark registration, no registration is more important, more impactful, and more effective than a trademark registration from the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Enrollment in any country other than the USPTO requires proving that your mark has been used in commerce within that country for an extended period.
Most countries also require you to prove that your mark has acquired particular “distinctiveness,” which indicates how well consumers across various contexts have perceived your signature. To acquire distinctiveness, you must prove that your mark has become associated with a specific product category. Establishing this requires a little more work. The international trademark registration offers several advantages to foreign trademark owners and licensees.
Various Advantages –
1. World-Class Trademark Search –
International trademark registration offers a world-class trademark search that provides strong evidence of the authenticity of your brand. In addition, international trademark registration creates an asset in cyberspace that can be linked back to your physical goods and services. What’s more, a world-class trademark search is often available for a nominal fee.
2. Produce Evidence of Use –
Proving used for trademark registration is not difficult if your mark has been in use for more than one year within a country other than the United States. However, if you have not used your influence in commerce within a country other than the United States, this burden of proof can be difficult to meet. There are several ways to meet this burden. For Example, you can videotape the use of your mark within a country, or you can produce evidence that demonstrates that you have used your influence in commerce in other countries. Another option is to prove that your mark has acquired distinctiveness through secondary meaning.
3. Incorporate Your Trademark Into Your Organizational Structure –
One of the most critical advantages of international trademark registration is its ability to incorporate your mark into your organizational structure. For Example, if you own a U.S. corporation and have been using your trademark for over five years, you can incorporate that trademark into your corporation’s name. Doing so dramatically increases the likelihood of avoiding any potential legal issues in the future.
4. Guarantee Trademark Infringement –
Of all the reasons for international trademark registration, your mark internationally, the most important reason is to guarantee trademark infringement. There are no international treaties for enforcing trademarks in foreign countries outside of what’s known as “common law. For Example, your brand has been used in the United States for over ten years. Therefore, it is highly unlikely that any trademark attorney or court in the United States would entertain a lawsuit because you violated someone else’s trademark. But, if you file a U.S. trademark registration for your mark internationally, you will be able to prove that you have been actively using your signature in commerce internationally for several years without being accused of trademark infringement.
5. Get Exclusive Rights to Your Trademark –
When a foreign trademark is registered in the United States, the U.S. trademark registration is presumed to be valid and enforceable in every country other than that country, as long as there’s proof of use. In addition, it gives you exclusive rights to your brand internationally with the ability to use U.S. federal courts as a base of operations if someone were to violate your trademark outside of your country of origin.
6. Open the Door for More Powerful Rights –
Many trademark owners make the mistake of using a single-category or single-product trademark. It can be the most cost-effective route for protecting your mark. However, having a broader approach to your brand will ensure that you have more rights and protection from giant corporations in areas you have not yet considered.
7. Give the World a Notice that You Are Existence –
Many trademark owners think their brand is so unique that no one else could possess the same mark. However, this assumption can be challenged by a foreign filing your mark in the United States. If someone from another country believes that your signature is not distinctive, you will gain a robust legal and publicity tool to prevent this infringement.
8. Keep Your Trademark in the Right Place –
Trademark registration in the United States has no expiration date, but many countries have an expiration date that you have to meet. However, if your trademark is registered internationally, you can preserve your mark and keep it available until you need it.
9. Avoid Potential Legal Problems –
One of the essential advantages of international trademark registration is its ability to avoid a potentially expensive legal battle when you are sued for trademark infringement. Suppose you have been using your mark for several years within a country other than the United States and have a solid legal team. In that case, you will have a good shot at avoiding any potential legal issues with international trademark protection. If you currently own a U.S. trademark registration but want to use your mark internationally on a larger scale, your signature must be registered internationally as soon as possible.
10. Don’t Allow Someone Else to Steal Your Identity and Money –
Finally, there are several reasons why you should avoid international trademark registration. The biggest reason is that someone else could steal your identity and money in an area where you had not even considered the possibility of trademark infringement. For Example, you may be using a trademark in the U.S., and someone from another country could be using the same mark for a completely different product or service. Or, you could find out that someone has already filed your trademark outside the United States and they have a legitimate claim to those rights. In some cases, they may have even been operating under that mark for several years before you even discovered your brand.
The international trademark registration helps protect your brand and reputation, but it also serves as a powerful legal tool to protect your reputation in the future. By registering your trademark internationally, you can ensure that anyone who uses your mark without your permission will be met with the following consequences: