Last month, we spoke about creating the right business logo. This month, we will talk about the protection of your logos – the need and how to protect it.
Why Protect Logos?
The protection of your business’s logo is imperative in order to safeguard your business interest. The need for logo protection arises due to one or both of the following reasons:
• Rampant plagiarism and misuse
• Dilution of brand visibility and recognition if similar logos are used
Logo Protection: There are two ways to protect your logo: The foremost way of protecting your logo is by using it. Using it establishes the ownership of your logo. Hence, use it in your products, website, your business stationery like letterhead, envelopes, business cards, etc. Secondly, register your logo as a Trade Mark. • Apply in writing to the Registrar of Trade Marks
• Your application for the logo registration should be made on Form TM-1 with a prescribed fee of Rs. 2500/- at one of the five officers of the Trade Marks Registry located at Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, and Ahmedabad depending on the place where you reside or have your principal place of business
• Enclose proof of the following – Your full name and address, in case the business is a proprietorship or of all partners in a partnership concern or all directors of a company as the case may be. A true copy of identity and address proof or Partnership Deed or in case of a company, the Memorandum of Association Remember, the registration of a logo is for a period of ten years but may be renewed upon re-application. The renewal is made for a period of ten years from the date of expiration of the original registration or of the last renewal of registration, as the case may be.
What happens when someone infringes upon your registered logo?
If a person who is neither a registered proprietor nor has been granted permission to use it, uses a mark that is identical or deceptively similar to your registered logo, he is considered to have infringed your trademark. Note, violation of any provision of trademark law in India is a cognizable offense. As the owner of a logo (trademark), you may initiate legal proceedings for trademark infringement to prevent unauthorized use of your registered trademark. The penalties are subject to different sections for different levels of violation.